“Rehab” is a commonly used term that can refer to a range of drug treatment
options. Teens who read about celebrities checking into residential drug treatment
centers—places that look a lot like five-star resorts—may have a glamorized view of
drug addiction and treatment for drug addiction. Teens may not “get” the severity
of drug addiction. If they do understand how serious drug addiction is, then they
may not know where to get help. Untreated drug addiction presents the risk of
serious problems within families and communities, including violence, crime, health
emergencies, child abuse, and unemployment.
This final installment of this school year’s Heads Up series highlights the realities
of treatment for drug addiction. Teens will learn that drug addiction is a serious and
chronic, yet treatable, brain disease. Like other chronic illnesses, drug addiction
requires continued care, and successful treatment can involve several different therapies.
I hope you share this article with your students to provide them with important
facts about drug addiction and treatment.
Nora D. Volkow, M.D.
National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)>
Download the lesson plan and worksheet (PDF) that accompany the student article “The Truth About “Rehab” and Drug Addiction” (PDF).