Factors that Lead to Underage Substance Abuse

Factorsthat Lead to Underage Substance Abuse

Factorsthat Lead to Underage Substance Abuse

Substanceabuse refers to the unauthorized use of hard drugs such as weed andcocaine among others. The ultimate result of taking this drugs is theaddiction that has various effects on the life the user. Typically,research indicates that children are prone to underage substanceabuse due to a number of reasons. Classically, underage substanceabuse is currently the most threatening enemy to the development ofthe nation, and there are various campaigns to fight it off theyounger generation (Hawkins,et al. 2014).This essay aims to discuss some of the factors that lead to underagesubstance abuse provide the appropriate solution for the problem.

Lackof child to parent communication

Itis possible to reduce underage drug abuse if the parents choose totalk to their children as alcohol and drug abuse. For instance, ifparents educate their children on about the side effects of substanceabuse they are likely to have children that avoid drug abuse. According to Kaminer,students who believe that their parents pay little attention to themare likely to fall trap of the substance abuse (Kaminer,2013).Study shows that parents who closely monitor their child’sactivities deterred their child from possibly falling into the trapof substance abuse by 10-14 % according to (foxnews.com) . As aresult, parents are encouraged to talk to their children regardingtheir daily life and other relevant topics. This is because when thekids know that there is a checkpoint at home, they are likely toavoid substance abuse to avoid falling into trouble.

Tryingto fit in at school

Despitethe fact that alcohol and drugs are prohibited at school, teens areknown to smuggle them into the compound. Therefore, this implies thatmost of the children at school might be forced to use them so thatthey can fit in. Therefore, parents are advised to talk to theirchildren about friends and also those they are hanging out with whenthey leave for school (Brorson,et al. 2013).Research shows that 29% of teens report exposure to drugs withinschool property from grades 9 through 12.


Researchshows that 20% of underage drug abuse victims start by using theirparent’s prescriptions due to the free access when the parents arenot at home. Chances are that children could steal alcohol or drugsfrom their parents stash when their parents are not at home.Therefore parents should keep the drugs away from their children toavoid tempting their children. A research done in 2014 stated thatfemales had a higher percentage of abusing prescription painkillerswhich happens to be the leading cause of overdosed death in the U.S.was higher than that of males with a total of 5.4% of females ages12-17 having admitted to abusing pain killers found in their homescompared to just 4% from males.


Inthis study, the researcher will apply the non-probability snowballsampling method. Usually, the underage who abuse substance tend to bein hiding or do not want to be known. This means that getting suchstudy subjects is quite complex. The snowball method will be mostappropriate as one study subject can refer the others. Referringothers is possible as the individuals know and identify with eachother. The first few members who are identified as the initialsubjects can then lead one to more study respondents for the study.In case there is attrition during the study, the researcher can thenfocus on better communication on the goals of the study. Creation ofwelcoming and respectful environment is necessary for maintainingattrition. Another way is to provide incentives such as payments atthe end of the study. Payment is meant to motivate the participantsand appreciate their time. Participants also need to be educated ontheir role as the research participant. Through this, the objectiveof the research will come out and hence the significance.


Thestudy participants will be individuals who are below 18 years andabove 12 years of age both males and females who abuse any drug. Theywill be assessed and identified as those who need treatment andcounseling to stop the drug and substance abuse. The participantswill be recruited for 1 month using the snowball sampling method. Thesample size will be 100 out of a population of 400 underages. This isquite appropriate, as the sample size needs to be at least 20%representative of the total population. To participate in this study,the individuals will fill the consent forms guided by the legalguardians. Confidentiality and privacy of the information isguaranteed.


Cohen,N., &amp Arieli, T. (2011). Field research in conflict environments:Methodological challenges and snowball sampling.&nbspJournalof Peace Research,&nbsp48(4),423-435.