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The Problem - Substance Abuse

Adolescent substance abuse can have very serious short- and long-term consequences. These can include difficulty concentrating, a decline in school performance, mood or emotional problems, behavior problems, social isolation, withdrawing from enjoyable activities, and engagement in other risky activities like unprotected sex and driving while under the influence. It is important to prevent even experimentation as continued substance use can lead to addiction and dependence, incarceration, brain damage, or death. The adolescent brain is still developing well into their twenties. Early substance abuse can have lasting cognitive and behavioral effects.