6 Reasons Teens Try Drugs and/or Alcohol

There is no one reason why teenagers may use alcohol or drugs. But here are several of the main issues and reasons for the behavior of teenage alcohol and drug use.

1. Teens see others doing it.

Teens will see a lot of people consuming substances. They will see their parents ass well as other adults smoking cigarettes, drinking alcohol, and trying other substances. Additionally, a teen’s social scene will often revolve around smoking pot or drinking. If teens don’t openly encourage each other to try drinking or smoking pot, they may want to try it because they see their friends enjoying it.

2. They are bored.

Teens who cannot stand being alone or have difficulty keeping themselves busy are likely to use substances. Not only will these substances give them something to do, but they will help them to feel less empty and to be able to talk to other teens who use drugs.

3. They watch movies/listen to music/watch TV shows that advocate substance use.

According to a recent study, 45 % of teens agree with the statement “Movies and TV shows make drugs seem like an ok thing to do.”45% of teens also agree with the statement: “The music that teens listen to makes marijuana seem cool.” Some TV shows even glorify alcohol abuse and rehabilitation. (Though in truth, rehabilitation is no laughing matter. If you know a teen who struggles with severe alcohol abuse, you may encourage them to seriously consider treatment for alcohol abuse.)

4. They want to rebel.

For the rebellious teenager, the substances he or she uses depend on his or her personality. Those who smoke cigarettes may want to flaunt their independence or make their parents angry. Those who drink may want to be able to behave more aggressively or have social anxiety they want to overcome. Those who smoke pot or use hallucinogens often want to escape. The reasons a teen may use a substance are varied.

5. They want instant gratification.

Alcohol or drugs work very quickly, and the effects initially feel good. They may turn to various substances because they think it is a short cut to happiness.

6. They want to feel more confident. 

Many teens who are shy or who experience social anxiety report feeling more confident on drugs or alcohol. This is primarily because drugs and alcohol distort reality and lower inhibitions. So teens are able to feel things that aren’t really there. Most teens have trouble with self-confidence so it’s easy to see why substances may be appealing.