Teens may feel they are in full control of their drug experimentation but since the human brain doesn’t stop forming until a person reaches their mid-to-late 20s, the teenage brain is particularly vulnerable to being rewired by these substances that overload the reward circuits in the brain. This means that adolescents are more susceptible to forming an addiction than adults who experiment with drugs.
David Sack M.D. is board certified in Psychiatry, Addiction Psychiatry and Addiction Medicine, explains that teens don’t consider the potential consequences drugs and alcohol can have when they consume them. “They’ll start off with something they perceive as ‘innocent’ such as alcohol or marijuana or set boundaries like, ‘I’ll only party on weekends,’” says Sack.