The Addiction Policy Forum, a leading addiction nonprofit, has developed the “How Do You Really Keep Your Kids Safe from Addiction?” toolkit to support parents with evidence-based prevention strategies.
Over 20 million Americans suffer from substance use disorders, and according to The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University, 90% of Americans with a substance use disorder began using substances before the age of 18. Addiction is a disease that, for the vast majority of patients, begins in childhood.
“Parents play a critical role in their kids’ decisions about substance use, but most parents aren’t given evidence-based information about addiction prevention,” says Jessica Hulsey Nickel, founder of the Addiction Policy Forum. “One of the most important elements in preventing the development of a substance use disorder is delaying the age of first use until the brain is fully developed.”
The Addiction Policy Forum created “How Do You Really Keep Your Kids Safe From Addiction?” to translate the science of prevention into strategies parents can incorporate into busy lives to help build a strong foundation of health and wellness for their children.
“This open-source toolkit provides parents with simple, accessible guidance about preventing substance use disorders,” says Morgan Gliedman, Addiction Policy Forum vice president of education and engagement.
The digital toolkit includes the videos “10 Things Parents Can Do,” “The Disease of Addiction,” and “Risk and Protective Factors;” full-color and printer-friendly versions of the “10 Things Parents Can Do” booklet; “Signs and Symptoms” of substance use disorders; and further reading and resources, including information about Addiction Policy Forum’s Addiction Resource Center, where parents can learn more and find help if they are concerned about a loved one’s substance use.