Does Your Teen Need Help?

Making the decision to enroll your troubled teen in a program that provides long-term solutions can be difficult for any parent or family member to make. Many families struggle with deciding what the best treatment option is for their teen. Oftentimes, short-term treatment options are unable to provide the structure and support needed to eliminate negative habits and behaviors. There are several questions that you can ask yourself to help you in this decision making process.

Key Questions

  • Do you have major concerns about your son’s motivation, drive, or confidence for the future?
  • Do you fear that his current relationships, choices, and environment are putting him on the wrong path?
  • Are you concerned for your teens physical safety?
  • Are you concerned for the safety of others or even yourself?
  • Do you know where your son is, in order to be certain of his and others safety?
  • Are your teen’s actions resulting in having disciplinary troubles at school or run-ins with law enforcement?
  • Are your teens actions negatively affecting other members of the family?
  • Have you exhausted all of your personal resources and feel like your personal ability to cope and function is being compromised?

If you can answer, “yes,” to any of these questions, it may be time to consider a treatment program, that focuses on facilitating long-term change. Our Admissions Coordinator is available to discuss how we may be able to help your family. Please, do not hesitate to call, we are here to help!  If you would like to request more information about Ozarks Teen Challenge: Inquire Today!

Warning Signs of Drug & Alcohol Abuse

teen in drug treatment program relapsingWhen a youth starts using drugs, they usually exhibit many different signs which parents need to watch out for. Unfortunately, many parents often write-off these signs as normal adolescent behavior and as a result they don’t realize that their teen suffers from addiction and needs help. So how can you as a parent know for sure whether or not your teen is in danger of falling into drugs? Simple … by understanding that every child is in danger of this. The parent who says “not my kid” is the same parent who will miss all the signs of addiction. A state of denial only make helping them later more difficult. So here are some signs of addiction that you, as parents, can look out for:

Dramatic changes in style of clothes, hair, music

  • Can serve as warning signs to you that your child is in danger of falling into the same kind of peer pressure when it comes to drugs.

Hanging out with a bad crowd

  • Your teen’s friends are like a mirror for your son or daughter — they look at themselves in that mirror and try to conform to what they see there.

Tardiness and/or truancies

  • Stay in touch with your teen’s school. Don’t assume that their school will let you know about this kind of behavior.

Isolating from family

  • Children are smart – they know that the easiest lie to tell is the one they can avoid having to tell.

Changes in attitude and personality

  • Often parents just see this as normal teenage behavior and write it off. Don’t make this mistake.

Changes in sleep patterns

  • Does your teen sleep way too much or way too little. If your child isn’t sleeping much, there’s a good chance he/she is using. This is a frequent effect of stimulants.

Eating way too much or way too little

  • If your child is smoking pot with his/her friends, it wouldn’t be unusual for your child to eat a bit more food than normal. Skipping quite a few consecutive meals can be a sign of using speed.

Paranoia – everyone is out to get me

  • This is one of the most common signs of drug abuse.

Dilated eyes – red eyes – glazed eyes

  • A person’s eyes show the effects of the drugs their on. If you think your child is experimenting with drugs, watch his or her eyes.

Sudden bursts of anger

  • This doesn’t have to mean physical violence (though that is often the case).

Lies!

  • If your teen is experimenting with drugs, he/she will be telling lots of lies to cover this up. Be persistent and learn what it is that they are trying to cover up.

Dramatic mood swings

  • This is often confused with ‘normal’ teenage behavior, but it can also be an obvious sign of drug abuse. Don’t simply write it off.

Excessive money spending or money disappearing

  • Drugs cost money. If your child keeps coming to you needing money, or if money keeps coming up missing from your purse or your wallet, you need to have a serious talk with your child. Especially if they always seem to need 20 dollars or 50 dollars — round amounts — since that is often the price drugs cost.

Learning these signs of addiction can mean the difference between life and death for your teen. The effects of such destructive behaviors can be devastating to students, families, and marriages.  If you or someone you know is currently experiencing any of these issues, contact our Admissions Coordinator for additional information on how we can help.


How to Help Your Troubled Teen?

mother discusses Ozarks Teen Challenge with SonMany godly parents have prayed and fasted for their teens, yet they watch painfully as their child continues down a path of rebellion and destruction. One mother said, “I pray for my children, but why is God so slow to answer?” So what can parents or grandparents do to help deter bad behavior? Keep praying, but stop enabling!  Enabling a troubled teens addictive/destructive behaviors may at first appear to be “helpful actions” but, in reality, they are only contributing to their downfall.  Understanding what enabling is the first step towards avoiding this pitfall.  Please take a few minutes to look through some of our latest resources on this topic.

Suggested Reading

Many families find that family therapy helpful before, during and after your son’s treatment. While your son receives treatment for substance abuse or behavioral problems, it is critical that the family support is there for him when he returns home. Learn how to provide family support without enabling your son’s bad behaviors.

If you feel that you need to stop enabling and that action is necessary get your troubled teen the help he needs, call us today at: 417-272-3784.  The decision to enroll your teen in a residential rehabilitation program can be a difficult, our Admissions Coordinator would love to help.

Parent & Family Involvement is Key

Ozarks Teen Challenge recognizes that parent and family involvement is key to the continued success of our students. Destructive behaviors can be troubling and affect the entire family.

We encourage the rest of your family to seek support throughout the course of your son’s rehabilitation as well. Whether through family support groups, your pastor, or family counseling, it is essential that families grow during the rehabilitation process and learn to accept and forgive your son.

We strive to facilitate family reconciliation, healing, and forgiveness as your teen moves through his program. During this rehabilitation process, family support is essential. Our program offers regular communication, parent weekends, and a structured visitation schedule.

Parental Communication

Ozarks Teen Challenge strives to keep parents informed of every aspect of their boy’s progress and care by providing:

  • A Parent Contact For Each Family

    • Bi-weekly updates for parents from a staff member specifically assigned to them
  • Weekly Phone Calls With Your Boy

  • Regular Letters From and To Home

  • Detailed Monthly Progress Reports

    • Behavioral, Spiritual, and Academic Progress is reported

Pass Schedule

Passes are privileges that the boys earn as they move through their program. These passes aid students and families in the reconciliation process as their teens’ begin to demonstrate responsible choices and personal growth. Families are also provided with Check-In Worksheets for each pass to give every visit a specific family growth focus.

  • On-Campus Weekend Pass/Family Visit

    • At the Completion of Phase 1 of Program
  • Two Off-Campus Weekend Passes/Family Visit

    • During Phase 2 & 3 of Program
  • Overnight Weekend Pass/Family Visit

    • During Phase 4 of Program
  • Two 4 day Home Passes/Visits

    • During Phase 4 & 5 of Program

Family Weekends

While your teen may need support from our rehabilitation center, they will still need the support of loved ones. For this reason, we have scheduled family weekends designed for families to reconnect and work together. We host a formal family weekend once every two months to correspond with your teens’ pass schedule. During these weekends you can expect family educational programming and worship services, as well as the opportunity to discuss issues or share growth experiences together.

Family “Check-In” Program

We also provide Family Check-In Worksheets for both students and their families to fill out and share with one another during their pass weekends. These worksheets are individualized for each pass weekend and provide opportunities for families to grow and learn together.  In addition, each worksheet corresponds to the learning objectives for that specific phase of your teen’s program. The goal of these worksheets is to help facilitation reconciliation and change within the family unit, as a whole, in order to help your teen maintain growth after graduation from our program.