Kids today are frequently confronted with choices that will impact their future. They need our help, and they don’t have time to wait. Prompt intervention is important to keep small problems from becoming big ones. But, all too often, their insurance only covers a few counseling sessions or none at all. This is the gap ACES hopes to fill for the kids of Lyons and South Proviso townships
CONSIDER THE FACTS
A 2010 study by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health concluded that, for the most part, the kids are alright. Co-author Clea McNeely said “Most teens are normal in every way, and most are going to grow up to be productive and reasonably happy adults.”
But today’s adolescents are dealing with an unprecedented amount of stress and pressure—from grades, schedules, homework, friends, family problems, the economy, and worries about life after high school. Even normal, healthy kids may encounter bumps in the road to adulthood, and to navigate safely around these bumps, they need help from trusted adults—parents, teachers, and sometimes, professional counselors.
• About 20% of teens will experience depression before they reach adulthood, but less than one third get help.
• Kids with untreated depression are more likely to have trouble at school, struggle with relationships, and engage in risky behavior. Depression can make a teenager as much as 12 times more likely to attempt suicide.
• After years of decline, teen marijuana use is on the increase, as is the misuse of prescription drugs such as Adderall.
• Nearly half of all teens drink alcohol at least once a month, and 14% have been drunk at least once in the past year, according to MedicineNet.com. In the US, alcohol kills more kids than all illegal drugs combined
Clearly, this is a lot for the still-developing adolescent brain to deal with. That’s why it’s so important that help is available, affordable and easily accessible. That’s why ACES is here.