As Teen Substance Abuse Rises Statewide, Concerns Raise About Youth Treatments at Drug and Alcohol Rehab Centers in New Mexico

Substance abuse affects more teens in New Mexico than in most other states, according to a nationwide survey. The Land of Enchantment ranks second highest in teen cocaine and Ecstasy use, fifth highest in methamphetamine use, and eighth highest in heroin use. These findings have advocates throughout the state concerned about the availability of teen addiction treatment programs offered at drug and alcohol rehab centers in New Mexico.

If you or a friend are struggling with trying to overcome substance abuse, understand that you’re not on your own. Call our 24/7 confidential helpline at 505-832-3082 to learn more about local rehab centers that can help you or your friend achieve sobriety from drugs and/or alcohol.

Examining Teen Substance Abuse in New Mexico

Teen Substance Abuse

New Mexico has one of the highest rates of teen substance abuse in the country.

Health officials are saying New Mexico’s teen substance abuse statistics aren’t surprising, given the state lacks youth addiction treatment options. Officials are also saying drugs are easily accessible in the state, which already has a deep history of substance abuse and related problems. Dr. Michael Landen, State Epidemiologist, says the state’s high rates of substance abuse are consistent with its drug overdose deaths and alcohol-related deaths.

The nationwide survey on teen substance abuse, called the Youth Risk Behavior Survey, quizzes youth on 118 health behaviors including eating habits, sexual activity, and drug and alcohol use. States use these findings to identify and develop education and prevention programs that help lower teen substance abuse rates.

Advocates for anti-drug use among teens say New Mexico is abundant in illegal drugs, but that the state mainly lacks addiction treatment options for teens. Addiction specialist Dr. Miriam Komaromy says many rural communities outside of Santa Fe and Albuquerque offer very little in the way of rehab treatment, which makes it hard to connect teens with addiction treatments designed for youth.

Exploring Rehab Options For Teens in New Mexico

An addiction treatment facility in Albuquerque recently closed its teen unit last month, which leaves the state lacking inpatient medical detoxification services for teenagers. Jennifer Weiss-Burke, executive director of a nearby addiction treatment facility, says drug use in New Mexico spans across generations, and that many youth are first exposed to painkillers and other illicit drugs in their homes. The Department of Health announced it is closing the teen unit due to having been underutilized for youth, and will be using the unit to treat adults.

Teens who struggle with substance abuse can still benefit from outpatient programs — some of which offer detoxification and most of which offer behavioral counseling and therapies that address the root causes of addiction. Many rehab facilities that treat teens also integrate family behavioral therapy with addiction treatment so families can learn how to cope with and overcome substance abuse as one supportive unit.

If you or someone you love is struggling with substance abuse, call our 24/7 helpline at 505-832-3082 to learn more about your rehab options. Our treatment specialists will consult with you about drug and alcohol rehab centers in New Mexico devoted to helping you or your loved one overcome substance abuse.

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