Drug Use in Adolescents
The reason one problem is not considered significant over another is distinguished between a personal or public issue and whether it threatens our social institutions. This is based on a question of which problems are serious enough to need sociological attention and has been difficult and controversial over years (Leon-Guerrero, 2011). The sociological perspective of examining social problems helps society to on what level a problem needs to be addressed. Being able to recognize social problems and the hopes to solving them are important in identifying how a society comes to view social problems and forces society to decide whether a problem is considered significant.
A particularly serious social problem among adolescent children 12 years of age or older is the rapidly increasing drug use. So what is drug abuse? According to the American Social Healthy Association’s definition of drug abuse is the “use of mood modifying chemicals outside of medical supervision, and in a manner which is harmful to the person and the community.” (Reid, 2006). Even though it is illegal for anyone in the United States to be caught with illegal drugs, many teens are still getting caught using them and it is becoming an increasing common occurrence. Drug use is highest among people in their mid-late teens and twenties.
So why do adolescents use drugs? Teenagers today are in a huge environment where pressures are high to succeed and fit in. Drugs of abuse are substances that individuals use to get high and change how they feel. Teens especially abuse drugs to change their situation. Teenagers who feel they are not connected to their peers or valued by their parents are at a greater risk for drug abuse. Teenagers want nothing more than to feel like they fit in and if they do not have this in their lives they will look for ways to fill this emptiness. Drugs provide that instant “in” that most teens find desirable especially in teens with low...
References: Leon-Guerrero, A. (2011). Social Problems: Community, Policy, Social Action. Los Angeles, Sage, 3rd edition.
National Institute on Drug Abuse, (2012). Drug facts: Nationwide trends. Retrieved from website: http://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/nationwide-trends
Reid, S. (2006). Crime and criminology. (11th ed., pp. 1-591). Boston: McGraw-Hill Companies.
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