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Preventing Teen Substance Abuse Within Rural Areas

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Preventing Teen Substance Abuse in Rural Areas Teenagers living in rural communities are more susceptible to drug and alcohol abuse than their urban counterparts. Although it may seem that living in a less populated area would present teens with less opportunity for trouble, the lack of stimulation creates an atmosphere conducive to substance abuse. PsychologyToday.com has listed boredom among the top reasons that teens get themselves into trouble (Lohmann, 2010). Public programs and activities provide a healthy outlet for these potentially troubled teens and are a necessary facet of any environment. There is a direct correlation between lack of community supported recreation and teen drug abuse; by developing an array of activities and support systems in rural areas it is possible to decrease the likelihood that adolescents will use substances, unfortunately introducing programs into rural areas comes with many challenges. Rural American towns often times have an older demographic, because of this the few businesses and recreational activities in those areas tend to cater to older clientele, leaving youth to fend for their own entertainment. When driving through small towns, one is much more likely to encounter things such as a bingo hall than a skate park. Only supply and demand services, such as grocery stores, hardware services, nursing homes and hospitals are truly staples of small town life, there is just not enough of a market demanding the kinds of activities that
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