Addicted Parents and Their Children

Topics: Addiction, Drug addiction, Alcoholism Pages: 3 (1056 words) Published: November 19, 2013

Addicted Parents and Their Children
Sheila Yzaguirre
Kaplan University
CM107-47: College Composition 1

Addicted Parents and Their Children
INTRO: Did you know that in the last generation scientists come to understand the ways of an addicted brain? “There are nearly 2 million heroin and cocaine addicts, perhaps 15 million alcoholics, and 10’s of millions of cigarette smokers in the United States alone.” (Harvard Mental Health Letter, July 2004) Children of addicted parents are the highest risk group of children to become alcohol and drug abusers due to both genetic and family environment factors (Kumpfer, 1999). PARA. 1: There are approximately one in four children in the United States that is exposed to alcohol abuse or alcohol dependence in the family. While there are other children living in families in which there is illicit drug abuse. Evidence shows that children who have experiences with parents who have drug or alcohol problems tend to have behavioral problems or abuse either substance themselves. (Center for Substance Abuse Prevention, 2003) Children with an addicted parent are also at a higher-than-average risk for problems in school. Some effects that are caused by having parents like these are emotional disturbances such as depression, and anxiety. When children grow up in a home that is unstable, or where they witness their parents under the influence of alcohol or drugs it can scar a child and cause emotional damage as well (Sheahan, 2008). Children with an addicted parent or parents also have a high risk of dropping out of school early due to indirect drug exposure that causes effects on the ability to learn effectively. In some cases it causes learning disabilities. Additionally, children may develop mental health problems that cause them to lose interest in their education (Sheahan, 2008). In one study, 41% of addicted parents reported that at least one of their children repeated a grade in school, 19% were...

References: Harvard Mental Health Letter, July 2004, Vol. 21 Issue 1, p. 1-4 1 p.
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (DHHS/PHS), R.n. (DHHS/PHS) Rockville, MD. Center for Substance Abuse Prevention. (2003). Children’s Program Kit: Supportive Education for Children of Addicted Parents.
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Kumpfer, K.L. (1999). Outcome measures of interventions in the study of children of substance-abusing parents. Pediatrics. Supplement. 103 (5): 1128-1144.
Kolar, A.F., Brown, B.S., Haertzen, C.A., & Michaelson, B.S. (1994). Children of substance abusers: the life experiences of children of opiate addicts in methadone maintenance. American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse. 20:2; 159-171.
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