Teens and Drugs

drugsMy practice started as a special education law practice. I assumed that I would be dealing with attending IEP’s and due process hearings. That is how it started. As my practice grew, it was clear that the issue of students with special education issues cast a wide net. Soon, I began interfacing with the criminal juvenile justice system. My young clients who struggled in school, struggled in life. The climate changed and kids as young as ten were arrested for behavioral outbursts at school. Teenagers developed drug problems and severe mental health issues. They needed help. It was more than getting kids off a charge. The family needed help to intervene at a number of levels.

This is an area of our legal practice that is less public. However, this is an essential topic for parents – all parents. There is no way to address the complexity of drug use among teenagers in a blog post. There are facts that are important for parents to know:

  1. There are risk factors for substance abuse. Learning disabilities, mental illness, ADHD are all risk factors for addiction. Dr. Volkow of the National Institute of Drug Abuse stated that six out of ten addicts have at least one co-occurring mental disorder.
  2. Ignoring this issue is not an option.

I am writing this post in part because I am in the process of reading “Clean” by David Sheff. It is a book that should be read by everyone who is touched by this terrible plague of drug and substance abuse.

Recommended: Clean: Overcoming Addition and Ending America’s Greatest Tragedy (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt 2013)

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About Micki Moran

Micki Moran is the founding partner of The Child and Family Law Center, Ltd. She dedicates her practice to providing legal assistance to children and families who are in need of representation in the areas of special education, disability law, juvenile and young adult criminal law, abuse and neglect, guardianship, and mental health issues. Micki's practice is founded on the principle that children and their families require and deserve excellent legal representation with a multidisciplinary approach that works with multiple systems of care and creates communities that support and improve the quality of all peoples' lives.
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