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Relation Between Unknown Adolescents Mental Health and Drug Use

Relation Between Unknown Adolescents Mental Health and Drug Use

Relation Between Unknown Adolescents Mental Health and Drug Use

Dunia Garcia

Miami Regional University

ENC2201: Report Writing and Research Methods

Dr. Uliana Gancea

April 15, 2022


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Relation Between Unknown Adolescents Mental Health and Drug Use

Could there be a relation between the undiagnosed mental health of adolescents and the drug use? In recent years there has been a significant increase of drug use in the adolescent population. Youth between ages 12 through 17 have been consuming several illicit substances that can affect the brain, especially during those so important years of cognitive development. Also, there is an increase of adolescents suffering from at least one type of mental health disorder. Not much have been researched or demonstrated to be the real cause of this progressive problem. What can be done to help these adolescents? If the cause for which these teenagers are giving in to the use of these drugs can be found, maybe many of them can be helped, and given the opportunity of a better solution and outcome to their situation. This study aims to find if there is a link between the possible unknown mental health condition and the drug use among these adolescents, and possibly to raise awareness on the increase of a very concerning issue affecting our youth.

Literature Review

Even though in the adolescent years is where health conditions should not be a problem, several people in this age group face a high risk or mortality every year. These consequences are not from any physical illness but a mental condition (Mewton, et al ,2019). According to Fidalgo, et al (2016), 60% of adolescents with substance abuse have a combined diagnosis with conduct disorder. Studies to determine the type of mental health problem and their relationship with drug use in adolescents are very important. Meredith et al (2018) states that, several researches have shown that there is not a big percentage of adolescent being examined for the use of alcohol and other drugs (AOD). A very low amount of adolescent mentions the they were tested for the use of any drugs, and out of those with possible use only a few were being helped or treated for their use of AOD. The research also points out that the probability of adolescents with increase chance of AOD use were being identified by their primary care physician and were being examined and treated in a higher percentage. Although, no positive correlation was discovered to be part of the testing and treatment on adolescent with AOD use and mental health issues. Data from the mental health inventory (MHI-5) strengthened the relation on AOD use, but also diminished the need for further therapy. This shows that primary care physicians are noticing the possibility of AOD use separate from any mental health issues, and that an unhealthy mental state can also be a cause for more evaluations and counseling about the use of AOD. Since there is a big relation among AOD use and mental health within the adolescent community, those with increased probabilities of the two problems could benefit from assistance with experts in this field. Gattamorta et al (2017) notes that, past researches show that the Hispanic adolescent community in the USA tend to concur in drug use. This research also demonstrated that the stress of juggling with the American and Latin social beliefs could be another reason to fall in these bad habits. Also, mental health disorders are a big part of going from low drug and alcohol consumption to a more aggressive and severe use of these substances. It was concluded that mental and behavior disorders demonstrated an elevated and earlier start of drug use. Parents and family-based role models interventions, as well as some school programs play a very important role in helping with the prevention of drug use in adolescents. Studies show that more than 40% of US adolescents have used some type of drug before the age of 16 (Vermeulen-Smit, et al ,2015)


The type of research used for this investigation was meta-analysis. The researcher selected LIRN catalog under the virtual library on the MRU website. The search group selected was “Health & Medical”. Under this group, “ProQuest Research Library: Health & Medicine” was chosen. The advanced search was carried, and the key words used were “adolescents mental health” and “cause of drug use”. To limit the results on this search, full text, English language, and publications within the last 3 years were selected. This search prompted 2,863 results, about 50 were taken into consideration to try to select the more relevance to the subject. The other 2,813 results were discarded because those were off topic.


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Limitations and Implications

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M. (2019). Lifestyle risk indices in adolescence and their relationships to adolescent disease burden: findings from an Australian national survey. BMC Public Health, 19(1), N.PAG.

Fidalgo, T. M., Sanchez, Z. M., Caetano, S. C., Maia, L. O., Carlini, E. A., & Martins, S

. S. (2016). The association of psychiatric symptomatology with patterns of alcohol, tobacco, and marijuana use among Brazilian high school students. American Journal on Addictions, 25(5), 416–425.

Meredith, L. S., Ewing, B. A., Stein, B. D., Shadel, W. G., Brooks Holliday, S., Parast, L.,

& D’Amico, E. J. (2018). Influence of mental health and alcohol or other drug use risk on adolescent reported care received in primary care settings. BMC Family Practice, 19, 1–N.PAG.

Gattamorta, K. A., Varela, A., McCabe, B. E., Mena, M. P., & Santisteban, D. A. (2017).

Psychiatric Symptoms, Parental Attachment, and Reasons for Use as Correlates of Heavy Substance Use Among Treatment-Seeking Hispanic Adolescents. Substance Use & Misuse, 52(3), 392–400.

Vermeulen-Smit, E., Verdurmen, J. E. E., & Engels, R. C. M. E. (2015). The Effectiveness

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