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Recognize the significance of addiction in the family

Drug and alcohol dependence can happen to anyone. But if there is a history of addiction – cocaine, alcohol, nicotine, etc. – in your family, then your child has a much greater risk of developing an addiction. As a parent you need to be aware of this elevated risk and discuss it with your child regularly, as you would with any disease.

  • Explain to your teen that while he may be tempted to try drugs, the odds are really against him. His genes make him more vulnerable and he could easily develop a dependence or addiction.
  • Don’t deny addiction in your family. Use it as a way to talk to your child and regularly remind her of her elevated risk.


Nora A.Volkow , M.D., discusses the importance of recognizing the significance of addiction in the family.

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