At Paradigm San Francisco, we understand that when teens are in treatment for mental health and/or substance abuse conditions, questions can overwhelm teens and their families. Because of this, many teens experience considerable stress from the lurking questions surrounding their experience. At the same time, parents and family members can feel overwhelmed with wanting to understand what’s happening and how to help, but not knowing where to begin. We understand that this journey is challenging for everyone involved, and we also know from experience that by supporting families to become knowledgeable and aware about the nature of different disorders and corresponding treatments, we can help alleviate some of the stress they’re feeling. To this end, we’ve designed our Teen Psycho-Educational Services program, which is offered free to all teens and families with us here at Paradigm.
At Paradigm San Francisco, we firmly believe in the importance of providing teens and their families with honest, clear information, at all times. Our Psycho Educational sessions provide an opportunity for teens and families to learn useful, pertinent information surrounding what they’re going through now and what they can expect, ahead.
In instance of Teen Substance Abuse disorders, we provide information not as a way to scare teens into quitting behaviors, but rather, to help them clearly understand the full effects which substances have on the body, and the consequences thereof. Despite teens often claiming that they’re knowledgeable about the effects of certain drugs, it’s actually extremely common for them to be quite ignorant of the complete side effects. Through our educational programs, we want to make sure that teens are educated regarding how their decisions may impact their physical health now as well as for years to come. This includes information such as how addiction forms and develops, how it affects people psychologically and biologically, and the nature of recovery. We find that by ensuring teens are aware about the complexity and gravity of addiction that they will better appreciate the importance of the work they’re doing, in treatment.
For teens that are struggling with Mental Health conditions, we educate teens and families about descriptions, symptoms, and clinical nature of specific illnesses. Courses might involve things such as information surrounding diagnosis, information regarding medications, the nature of the illness, what to expect, and what treatment options are available. The goal of these sessions is to help teens and families to become knowledgeable about the illnesses they are dealing with, so they can focus their energy and efforts on treatment, rather than needless anxiety caused by ignorance and unfamiliarity.
One of our goals at Paradigm San Francisco is to help parents and family members support their teens, by helping everyone involved become as knowledgeable and prepared as possible, regarding what’s happening. Often following a diagnosis, teens and loved ones can feel overwhelmed with looming questions; though this is completely normal, we want to answer those questions intentionally and early, so that everyone can shift their attention not toward what they fear, but instead, the treatment process at hand. What we find is that our Teen Psycho-Educational Services are an excellent way to help decrease teens and families’ anxiety and stress and prepare everyone involved to engage in the treatment process fully and meaningfully.