Talk to Your Kids about a Family History of Addiction

Talk to Your Kids about a Family History of AddictionWhile it is impossible to predict who will develop an addiction, there are certain factors that can increase a Chicago resident’s risk, such as a family history of the disease. If such a history exists, it can be helpful to discuss the dangers of addiction with children who may be affected.

Addiction Risk Factors for Children in Chicago

Although no single gene has been discovered that predisposes children in Chicago to addiction, the medical community’s understanding of genetic risk factors continues to grow. A 2012 study funded by the Medical Research Council at the University of Cambridge identified differences between the brains of people with no family or personal history of addiction and the brains of addicts and their non-addicted siblings. The siblings of addicts were found to have some abnormalities in the parts of their brains that are associated with self-control, even though they have no personal history of substance abuse.

Targeted Addiction Prevention for Children in Chicago

Addiction professionals’ understanding of how a family history of addiction affects children can help them to create targeted addiction prevention measures. Such measures may include aerobic exercise to strengthen impulse control and specialized computer training programs to strengthen the pre-frontal areas of the brain that may be vulnerable to addiction. Another effective prevention method is for parents with a family addiction history to speak with their children in Chicago about how to avoid addiction.

What to Tell Your Kids in Chicago about Addiction

Kids in Chicago who have a family history of addiction can benefit from adhering to a number of preventative tips, including the following:

  • Many diseases tend to run in families. Due to a family history of addiction, children should be cautious about avoiding drugs and alcohol, just as people with a family history of heart disease may avoid fatty foods and a sedentary lifestyle.
  • Children with a family history of addiction should never use a drug recreationally.
  • When in need of prescription drugs, it may be beneficial to ask a doctor to prescribe the least addictive options available and use them with caution.
  • If addiction is detected early and addressed, the chances of recovery increase. If you suspect that an addiction may be developing, do not delay in seeking help.

Finding Addiction Treatment for Chicago Residents

If you or someone you love in Chicago is struggling with addiction, please give us a call. Our counselors are available 24 hours a day to answer your questions about how a family history of addiction can affect your children. We can also help connect you with an addiction treatment program that meets your needs. Please call now.