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College Students

Drug abuse is a growing problem among college students across the United States. 

While drug use can start at any age, it is particularly concerning when it affects young adults who are just beginning to build their futures.

Let’s discuss why college students abuse drugs, trends in college student drug rehab in South Florida, and how the Atlantic Recovery Center in South Florida can help.

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Statistics for Substance Use and Mental Health Among Teens and Young Adults

US Alcohol and Drug Abuse Statistics

Statistics from the 2019 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, show an estimated 5.9 million people aged 12-25 reported misusing illicit drugs. That’s 24 percent of young adults and teens misusing alcohol and drugs. Of these:

  • 2.6 million people used marijuana
  • 1.1 million used psychotherapeutic drugs nonmedically
  • 825,000 used cocaine

The survey also revealed that more than 16 million Americans aged 12 and older had a Substance Use Disorder (SUD) in 2019.This figure includes 7.6 percent of individuals aged 12-20 and 6.6 percent aged 21-25.

Mental Health Statistics

Additionally, the survey found that more than 4 million young adults and teens experienced a major depressive episode in 2019This number breaks down to nearly 14 percent of individuals aged 12-17 and 11.3 percent aged 18-25. This indicates that mental health issues are often at the root of substance use disorders and highlights the need for comprehensive treatment that addresses both problems.

Substance abuse is an unfortunate reality for many college students, with the most commonly abused substances being:

  • Marijuana
  • Prescription stimulants (like Adderall)
  • Prescription opioids (like OxyContin and Vicodin)
  • Alcohol
  • Cocaine
  • Heroin
  • Hallucinogens (like LSD and MDMA or Ecstasy)

When it comes to young adults, there are a few key signs that you or someone you love may have an issue with substance abuse:

  • Increasingly erratic behavior
  • A change in attitude or outlook on life
  • Avoiding responsibilities like studying, work, and social activities
  • Increasing isolation from friends and family members
  • Using more of a substance than usual or for more extended periods
  • Neglecting personal hygiene or self-care
  • Withdrawal from family and friends
  • Excessive spending on drugs and alcohol
  • Troubles related to school or work, such as skipping classes or not showing up on time
  • Missing important meetings or appointments

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The more that you learn about Atlantic Recovery Center, the more that you’ll see that our facility is for you. Since a rehab center is only as good as its services, our staff offers programs that meet your needs.

Why Do College-Aged Students Abuse Drugs?

There are many reasons why college students turn to drugs. Some of the most common causes include:

Peer Pressure

College students may feel pressured to conform to their peers by experimenting with drugs.


College life’s academic and social pressures can be overwhelming for some students, leading them to seek relief through drug use.


For some students, a desire to explore new experiences may motivate drug use.

Mental Health Issues

Depression, anxiety, and other mental health conditions can lead some students to use drugs to cope.

Self-Esteem and Loneliness

Low self-esteem and feeling disconnected from others can drive some students to drug use.

What Are Colleges Doing About Drug & Alcohol Abuse?

The NIAA reports that one in four college students experience negative academic consequences from drinking, and about two out of five reports missing class because of alcohol

Officials realize the drug and alcohol abuse problem among their college campuses, and many are taking steps to prevent collegiate substance abuse. 

These campus prevention efforts include:

  • Student education programs, such as online courses designed to teach students about the risks associated with drugs and alcohol
  • Campus policies that require drug testing or random breathalyzer tests for students
  • Peer counseling services are available for those struggling with addiction
  • Access to student health centers where students can get help for a variety of mental health issues


Atlantic Recovery Center

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We aim to help everyone who contacts us. Whether our program makes sense for you or not, we will help you find the best treatment options that work best for your personal needs.

What Are Common Treatments in a South Florida College Rehab Center?

College student substance abuse treatment has come a long way in recent years. Today, many different types of collegiate recovery programs are available specifically designed for young adults. Some of the most effective approaches include:

Medical Detox

Detox is the first step in treatment and involves a period of monitored withdrawal from drugs or alcohol.

Inpatient Rehab Programs

Residential or inpatient treatment programs provide 24-hour care in a supportive environment and are often the most effective approach for college students.

Outpatient Rehab Programs

Atlantic Recovery Center does not currently offer an outpatient treatment program. 

Outpatient programs would permit students to seek treatment without taking time off from school or work.

Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

This therapy focuses on behavioral health by helping addicts acknowledge the negative thought patterns and behaviors contributing to drug use.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)

Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) is a hybrid of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy that synthesizes individual and group therapy to empower individuals to use healthier coping mechanisms.

Individual Therapy

Individual therapy is designed to help clients identify the underlying causes of their substance abuse and develop new coping strategies.

Group Therapy

Group therapy provides a supportive environment where individuals can share their experiences with others who have struggled with similar issues.

Family Counseling

Family counseling helps repair relationships that addiction has damaged and supports family members.

Aftercare Planning

Aftercare planning helps individuals prepare for life after treatment with strategies to prevent relapse and build a supportive network.

12-Step Recovery Groups

12-step recovery programs are designed to provide individuals with a structured support and accountability system.


Are There Support Groups that Work Specifically With Teens and Young Adults?

Yes! Support groups like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA)  offer supportive environments where young adults can connect with peers who are in recovery. In addition, there are groups like:


Ala-teen is an organization dedicated to providing support and information to teens affected by alcoholism in their families.

SMART Recovery

SMART (Self-Management And Recovery Training) provides evidence-based tools and strategies for young adults struggling with addiction.

LifeRing Secular Recovery

LifeRing Secular Recovery is a support group for those seeking an alternative to 12-step recovery.

Young People in Recovery

In addition, Young People in Recovery is a grassroots organization dedicated to helping young adults access treatment, find jobs, and create healthier lifestyles.

College Campus Support Groups

Additionally, many colleges have student-run support groups that provide a space for students to come together and share their struggles with substance abuse.

These programs also offer resources for getting help and provide a safe space to talk about addiction without judgment.

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Request a Callback

The more that you learn about Atlantic Recovery Center, the more that you’ll see that our facility is for you. Since a rehab center is only as good as its services, our staff offers programs that meet your needs.

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Atlantic Recovery Center Provides College Student Drug Rehab in South Florida

At the Atlantic Recovery Center, we have crafted detailed addiction treatment for college students in South Florida that provide top-notch care. At Atlantic Recovery Center, we believe that recovery is possible for everyone. We offer personalized treatment plans tailored to each individual’s unique needs and goals. 

With our help, you or your loved one can overcome addiction and build a brighter future. If you are struggling with substance abuse issues, don’t wait.

Contact ARC today to learn more about our programs and how we can help with your addiction recovery!