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Adolescent Substance Use, Brain Development and Treatment

Adolescent Substance Use, Brain Development, and Psychotherapeutic Change

Adolescence is a critical developmental period that is often associated with behavioral risk-taking and substance use. The prevalence of substance use increases significantly from early to late adolescence and peaks during the transition to adulthood (SAMHSA, 2011). Alcohol use rates increase from 29% to 65% between 8th grade and 12th grade, and similarly illicit drug use increases from 16% to 38% (Johnston, O’Malley, Bachman, & Schulenberg, 2010).

Alcohol Use Disorder in Women

Alcohol Use Disorder in Women

Alcohol use disorders (AUD - alcohol abuse and dependence) are major public health and safety problems. In the US, AUD is more prevalent among men (24.6% abuse, 17.4% dependence) than women (11.5% abuse, 8% dependence) (Keyes, Grant, & Hasin, 2008). However, in the last 70 years, the male to female ratio has decreased from 7:1 to 2:1 for alcohol dependence (Keyes et al., 2008).