Author(s): Owen Bowden-Jones
This is a book for parents about how to raise the thorny issue of drugs with their teenage children. Drugs have never been more available and your child is almost certain to come across them at some point, often with little idea of the risks. We need to talk with our children about drugs - talking before they come across drugs can help them make better choices - but it's not always straightforward. This book gives you advice on ways to have this important conversation. The book will provide parents with clear, up to date, accurate information about 'psychoactive' drugs (chemical substances which alter the functioning of the brain, causing changes in the way we think, feel and behave) and their effects. It gives plenty of information to help you understand how drugs work in the brain, what problems they cause and which treatments are most effective. It covers: what drugs are, who uses them and why; how teens use drugs; synthetics (legal highs); plus, how to detect if your child is using drugs and what to do about it. On a practical level, the book gives tips on how to have the conversation with your child; making it a conversation, not a lecture.It contains many case studies from the author's own clinical practice to illustrate different points, plus examples of actual conversations between parent and teenager. The chapters are written to stand alone so readers can dip into each one as necessary. If you have particular questions such as "How can I drug test my child?" or "I've just found drugs in their room, what should I do?" you can go straight to the relevant section, or you can read the whole book for the full picture. There is a summary of key points at the end of each chapter. All parents will need this book at some stage. It will help you to feel properly informed about drugs, more confident in talking to your child, more able to avoid drug-related problems developing and better equipped to tackle problems if they do arise.
"I weclome this book. It is an excellent resource for parents and an invaluable book for GPs and their patients." Professor Clare Gerada GP and Past-President of the Royal College of General Practitioners "Like any parent, I worry about how I can support my children in what can be a frightening world. Bowden-Jones's book lucidly and brilliantly sets out the truth about drugs and should be required reading for anyone who cares about our children's future - in other words, all of us." Rachel Kelly Writer, Journalist & Mental Health Campaigner. Author of Walking on Sunshine: 52 Small Steps to Happiness (Short Books, Nov 2015). "We meet many parents who are thrown by what they hear about drug availability today. Even if they have had experience of drugs themselves things seem different now. This book enables sensitive ways into having the conversation about drugs that parents otherwise feel flummoxed by." Jan King, Chief Executive, Angelus Foundation (Charity that promotes the dangers of 'legal highs' and young people's drug use) "The Drug Conversation provides accurate information about substances and the risks associated with use, delivered in a calm and non-judgmental way. Evidence suggests that, contrary to popular belief, parents are key influences of young people's behaviour. This book can help parents support young people to avoid the harms associated with substance misuse." Vivienne Evans OBE, Chief Executive, AdFam (Charity that improves support for families affected by drugs and alcohol) "Owen's book is amazingly clear with the brain science woven in at just the right junctures to make the relevant points. What we particularly like is that it is un-judgmental and very practical. We both wish we had had this at our fingertips 10 years ago! Vital reading for all parents." Janey Downshire and Naella Grew Authors of Teenagers Translated: How to Raise Happy Teens (Vermilion, May 2014)
"Like any parent, I worry about how I can support my children in what can be a frightening world. Bowden-Jones's book lucidly and brilliantly sets out the truth about drugs and should be required reading for anyone who cares about our children's future - in other words, all of us." --Rachel Kelly, Writer, Journalist Mental Health Campaigner
Dr Owen Bowden-Jones - Consultant Psychiatrist and Honorary Senior Lecturer at Imperial College, London; and Clinical Adviser at the Alcohol, Drugs and Tobacco Division of Public Health England.
Acknowledgements. Foreword. Introduction. How to use this book. Chapter 1, What are psychoactive drugs, who uses them and why? Chapter 2, Drug use and adolescence. Chapter 3, Having the drug conversation with your child. Chapter 4, Drugs and the brain. Chapter 5, Types of drugs. Chapter 6, Rise of the synthetics (legal highs). Chapter 7, Detecting drug use and what to do about it. Chapter 8, Treatment and recovery. Chapter 9, Final thoughts. Appendices. Index.