Community Prevention Handbook on Adolescent Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment

Evidence-Based Practices

Published In: Adolescent Substance Abuse: Evidence-Based Approaches to Prevention and Treatment / Edited By C. Leukefeld, T. Gullotta, S. Staton-Tindall (New York, NY : Springer + Business Media, Jan. 2009), Ch. 11, p. 213-249

Posted on RAND.org on January 01, 2009

by Elizabeth J. D'Amico, Matthew Chinman, Stefanie Howard, Abraham Wandersman

Substance abuse is, and has always been, an indisputable fact of life. People -- especially young people -- abuse various legal and illegal substances for any number of reasons: to intensify feelings, to achieve deeper consciousness, to escape reality, to self-medicate. And as substance-abusing teenagers mature, they pose particular challenges to the professionals charged with keeping them clean and sober and helping them maintain recovery into adulthood. Adolescent Substance Abuse: Evidence-Based Approaches to Prevention and Treatment offers clear, interdisciplinary guidance that grounds readers in the many contexts -- developmental, genetic, social, and familial among them -- crucial to creating effective interventions and prevention methods. Its contributors examine current findings regarding popularly used therapies, including psychopharmacology, residential treatment, school- and community-based programs, group homes, and specific forms of individual, family, and group therapy. The current chapter focuses on community prevention for adolescent substance abuse. First, the authors provide an overview of the different type of prevention programs and environmental strategies available for youth and discuss the prevalence of alcohol and drug use and consequences among this population. The chapter then focuses on factors that may contribute to both initiation and escalation of alcohol and drug use. The authors then discuss theories that ground community interventions and describe specific community-based prevention efforts that have been implemented across the United States. The authors also discuss the outcomes from these prevention efforts. They conclude by providing recommendations.

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