Addiction has no boundaries with respect to whom it can affect. It does not discriminate against race, background or age. When a teenager becomes addicted to one substance, treatment is tough. But when a teenager becomes addicted to a variety of substances with no particular preference, addiction becomes something a great deal more serious and challenging to treat. Teen Polysubstance Dependency is just that.

What is Polysubstance Dependency in Teens?

A person with polysubstance dependence is someone who is psychologically addicted to being in an intoxicated state without a preference for one particular substance. Teenagers or young adults suffering from polysubstance dependency use at least three types of addictive substances within a 12 month period.

Some drugs are used in combination to increase or maintain a high or low. In some cases a teenage addict may take a particular substance at a particular time or in a certain situation. Some drugs are used to counteract the effect of another. Some substances are simply used because they are easily available.

Polysubstance dependence can be associated with a number of mental health disorders, such as, depression. The polysubstance abuse may begin with seemingly harmless substances but may escalate with time.

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It is important to understand that those who use a variety of drugs place themselves at increased risk due to the multiple effects on their body systems, as well as any negative interactions and contraindications between the drugs themselves. By combining these drugs, it can pose risks such as: enhancing effects, system depressions (such as reduced breathing ability), or system toxicity.

It is difficult to detect polysubstance dependence as there is no one drug with respect to which the teenager demonstrates dependence or withdrawal. Each drug or substance needs to be considered in its entirety and in isolation, as well as in combination with one or more of the other substances or drugs. Producing a map of symptoms can be challenging and is often highly complex.

Some symptoms or habits to look out for in polysubstance dependence include;

  • A need to use increasingly larger amounts of a drug to get the same effect
  • Experiencing withdrawal symptoms when discontinuing use of the drugs or if the drug is not available
  • Using more drugs than planned, longer or more frequently
  • Unsuccessfully attempting to stop using drugs
  • Spending a significant amount of time obtaining or using drugs
  • Giving up previously enjoyed activities to use drugs
  • Continued use of drugs despite knowing they cause harm

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Recovery of and treatment for addiction to one drug is difficult, but multiple drugs is even more so. The evaluation, diagnosis and eventual form of treatment are complex. Once completed and the complexities and the condition of the patient are fully understood, a suitable treatment program can be provided. Polysubstance dependency has no quick fix and many other factors and/or disorders that are frequently represented in combination with the polysubstance dependence must be treated simultaneously or as part of the program, thus adding to the complexity.

Beachside Treatment Center and PolySubstance Dependency in Teens

Beachside Treatment Center has a qualified and experienced team of professionals to properly and fully evaluate and treat polysubstance dependency in teens. As a mental health facility that understands the complexities of addiction to multiple drugs in teenagers, Beachside Treatment Center provides individualized programs and professional help. Delivered in a calm and relaxed atmosphere, The Beachside Treatment Center team treats each case individually to ensure the very best results.

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