A Parent’s Guide to Teen Addiction

Professional Advice on Signs, Symptoms, What to Say, and How to Help

by Laurence M. Westreich. M.D.

Praise for A Parent’s Guide to Teen Addiction

“As Director of the National Office of Drug Control Policy, I saw firsthand how parents and families struggle to find the best way to help their teenagers cope with substance use and abuse problems. In A Parent’s Guide to Teen Addiction, Dr. Westreich gives practical, sensible advice about how to address teens and get them the care they need, with the firmness and compassion that only a parent can provide. I recommend it as a first line of defense if your teen is exhibiting the signs of substance use or abuse, or other addictive behaviors.” —Gen. Barry McCaffrey (USA ret.)

“Dr. Westreich masterfully provides a skilled balance between the science and art of understanding addictions in teens. Using both case examples and didactics, he provides a very pragmatic guide that is based on professionally accepted methods punctuated by his clinical experience in leading a child out of an addiction. A Parent’s Guide to Teen Addiction will be a very important asset to any family who is suffering with teenage addiction.” —Timothy Willens, MD, Clinical Director at the Center for Center for Addiction Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital

“Dr. Westreich’ s book presents a commonsense and user-friendly model for family members who want to help their drug- and alcohol-using teen. The scenarios and dialogues give valuable direction for managing an addicted teen’s often self-destructive and frightening behavior, and would be useful for anyone in this situation.” —Dr. Herbert D. Kleber, Founder and Director Emeritus of the Division on Substance Abuse at the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons and the New York State Psychiatric Institute

About the Book

Parents may suspect their teen’s substance use, but often don’t know if their teen is addicted or what to do about it. Dr. Laurence Westreich, an addiction expert and the father of two teenagers, helps parents navigate the fraught addiction landscape in A Parent’s Guide to Teen Addiction. Divided into three sections, this book—based on the author’s decades of experience evaluating and treating teenagers who use substances—guides parents from the moment they suspect their teen has a substance abuse problem to the steps families must take after intensive treatment. Dr. Westreich: •Lays out the facts of teen addiction and explains how to recognize a problem with a teen •Details what parents need to know about the substances that teenagers commonly use •Provides information on what to do about the substance abuse, including how to find good one-on-one addiction therapy, how to encourage a teen to enter an outpatient program or inpatient facility, and how to line up aftercare treatment Best of all, he includes “tough talk” dialogues that parents can tailor to their specific situation with their teen. This practical, hopeful, and reassuring book helps parents put their teen on the healthy and life-affirming road to recovery.

About the Author

Laurence M. Westreich, MD, is an addiction psychiatrist, clinical associate professor of Psychiatry at the New York University School of Medicine, and the author of Helping the Addict You Love. He is the past president of the American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry, and is a consultant on behavioral health and addiction to the commissioner of Major League Baseball. He has appeared on CNN, MSNBC, WABC-TV, Fox News, Radio America, Sirius Satellite Radio, WOR-AM, and AP Radio Network, and speaks to schools and community groups on an ongoing basis. He resides in Montclair, New Jersey.