Substance Abuse and Teenage Violence

In this regard, here I shall mention two viewpoints that are opposing to mine. First, I read that psychological disorders like Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD), at later stages, get converted into Conduct Disorder and Antisocial Personality Disorder. and, these disorders are responsible for the development of violence in a teen’s personality. The causes of ODD are mostly biological. Similarly, Antisocial Personality Disorder (APD) is a psychiatric condition in which the individual becomes violent and violates other people’s rights because APD snatches away from the individual any regard for what is rights and what is wrong. Other biological factors that are responsible for violence which include borderline personality disorder, depression, pathological lying, and abnormal personality traits (Siegel, 2008, p.286). Second opposing view I read was that damages or injuries to specific delicate areas of a child’s brain can cause his behavior to suffer. Neurotransmitters, that are chemicals present in the brain, can also be held responsible for ODD as their abnormal levels in the brain hinder with the proper communication of neurons with each other causing their messages to not being transmitted throughout the nervous system. Studies have also blamed the damage to orbitofrontal cortex chemical (Browner and Price, 2001, p. 720), and low level of chemical serotonin to be chiefly responsible for oppositional, defiant, hostile and violent behavior (Slap, 2008. Kotulak, 1997, p. 78). Aggression and violent behavior that occurs after puberty also involve abnormality in the hormone, testosterone. 2. It all began when I heard that my cousin had been caught in a severe fight with other teenagers in his neighborhood. He injured the other guys with fists and punches, and got himself bruised too. Nobody ever knew that he was also into drugs. We already knew that he used to have fights in school and with siblings, but the news that he was involved in drugs came like a bombshell to the whole family. His use of substance was depressing, and that incident in which the police came and arrested him, aroused in me a desire to learn more about the effects on substance abuse on teenagers’ minds. I wanted to learn whether substance abuse was a major cause behind a teen violating the rights of others, breaking laws, and indulging in fights and disputes in the school and at home. I wanted to learn how common the prevalence of substance use among teen students was. and, what did they think about the relation between substance use and teen violence. I also wanted to consult a health expert to increase my knowledge about this issue, since I wanted to inform my cousin’s parents that it was a medical issue and could be solved through medical guidance. 3. When I reviewed the literature, I came to know that most of the past research is based on emphasizing the fact that a large number of teenagers are getting involved in substance abuse. and, that substance abuse exists with many other factors that finally lead to teen violence. Most of the research talks about teen dating violence, and not generally on teen violence. I did not find any research paper that compared the two groups of teen students: one that was involved in substance abuse and the other that was not involved in such activity.

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