The Unique Challenges of Young Adults in Recovery

The Unique Challenges of Young Adults in Recovery

The National Institute on Drug Abuse reports that drug use is highest among people in their late teens and twenties. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, over 21 percent of adults aged 18-25 used illicit drugs in 2013; among those young adults, nearly five percent used prescription drugs non-medically. According to MIT’s Center for Work, Family and Personal Life, part of this poor choice to use drugs stems from the fact that the brain is still growing during these years, and it will continue its growth until at least the mid-20s.

Equally challenging for young adults is recovery from Ritalin addiction, because they face unique issues as they seek to overcome their dependence upon drugs. However, by understanding these challenges in the beginning, you can better understand what young adults are going through as they navigate a huge problem amidst a life stage of transition. Additionally, if you are a young adult who is undergoing Ritalin addiction recovery, then you can use the following information as you work through rehab and return to everyday life. Lastly, family and friends can also refer back to this information to help a loved one who is recovering under these circumstances.

Young adults age 18-25 face the following challenges in Ritalin addiction recovery:

  • Recklessness of young adulthood. Many young adults are not overly concerned about their long-term health, mortality or the consequences of their choices. In fact, they are experiencing freedom from parental authority and often make mistakes in their quest to impact the world. They may not realize that using drugs as an expression of freedom can result in being controlled by the very drugs they take. Furthermore, they may not take recovery seriously, because they may just bide their time before they get to use drugs again.
  • Peer pressure. While everyone faces peer pressure to some extent regardless of age, teens and young adults are surrounded by it rather often and in intense situations. College students and young professionals often see drinking and using drugs as rites of passage, so abstaining from these acts could result in social isolation or even rejection. Because young adults are still forming their sense of self, goals and beliefs, they will seek the affirmation of others in the process. As a result of identifying themselves with their peers, they may not see any problems with addiction if their peers are also addicts.
  • Increased exposure. College students and young adults are confronted with alcohol and drug use on a regular basis—sometimes they face this temptation multiple times in a single day. In many ways, alcohol and drug use seem like a cultural norm rather than a dangerous choice with dire consequences. Furthermore, young adults in recovery will reenter a culture that continually challenges sobriety, which will make continued recovery especially difficult.
  • Absence of perceived responsibility. Many people enter recovery because they feel responsible for other people in their lives, such as a spouse, parent or child, and this motivation is sufficient for continuing in recovery. However, most young adults have not established these kinds of relationships. They believe (wrongly) that their actions do not influence or affect others, so young adults in recovery may be tempted to relapse due to the lack of perceived responsibility or accountability to anyone else.
  • The milestone of turning 21. Many addicts began using drugs well before their 21st birthday, so young adults in rehab may be tempted to relapse when they come of age, because it is a major milestone entering adulthood. They can now legally purchase alcohol and think they are mature enough handle themselves around substances. Unfortunately, many young adults relapse on or around this milestone.
  • Lack of insurance or financial resources. Because many college students and young adults lack insurance, they often struggle with finding the recovery help they need. They cannot pay for treatment out of their own pockets, so they assume that they cannot enter treatment. Fortunately, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was signed into law in 2014, and it makes insurance both more accessible and more affordable for young adults. The ACA also requires most insurance companies to cover addiction recovery as a part of their benefits packages.

If you understand what young people face in their struggle with Ritalin addiction, then you can support a loved one through recovery.

Get Help for a Young Adult’s Ritalin Addiction

If you or someone you love is struggling with Ritalin addiction, then we can help. You can call our toll-free, 24 hour helpline anytime to talk with one of our admissions coordinators about the symptoms that concern you. Together, you can discuss treatment options and find treatment centers that target your unique needs and challenges. Do not allow addiction to rob you off all that life offers ahead; call us today for the help you need.