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Who is Currently Providing Rehab Services for Teenagers?

Scientists at King’s College London monitored more than 274 people, with half aged between 16 and 17 years and half between 26 and 29 years. They found the younger age group was three-and-a-half times more likely to become addicted to cannabis. It was likely because their brains were still developing or due to them having an evolving sense of identity, they suggested.

Meanwhile, among 17-year-olds in the UK, one in 10 will have used hard drugs, such as ketamine and cocaine according to University College London research. The research also showed nearly a third of 17-year-olds had tried cannabis and more than half admitted to binge-drinking alcohol.

Emla Fitzsimons from the UCL Centre for Longitudinal Studies, who co-authored the study, said: “Experimental and risk-taking behaviours are an expected part of growing up. Nevertheless, behaviours in adolescence can be a cause for concern as they can have adverse long-term consequences for individuals’ health and wellbeing, and their social and economic outcomes.”

There is currently a crisis in provision of evidence based, substance misuse services for those aged 16 and 17, falling as they do between young peoples and adult services with often poor transitions, and very little private provision.

By March 21 there were 11,013 young people receiving support from alcohol and drug services, 23% down on the previous year (14,291) and 55% down on the peak in 2009, when 24,494 young people received support. 73% of young people in treatment started using substances before the age of 15.

Young people who have drug problems often have complex needs. This often involves poor mental health and self-harm, and sometimes experience of criminal or sexual exploitation. These young people need a combination of specialist treatment and wider health and social care services. Services need to be trauma-informed and treatment should include the family if necessary.

Addiction also has a devastating impact on families. Families can support and aid recovery, but they also have their own support needs. Specific support is required for families with parental substance misuse treatment needs

(From harm to hope: A 10-year drugs plan to cut crime and save lives, Updated 29 March 2022)

Warning signs of Teenage Misuse of alcohol or drugs might include:

  • Failing grades with no other explanation
  • Changes in mood that are abrupt and distinct
  • Changes in friendships or groups
  • Changes in social interaction
  • Changes in hobbies or a lack of interest in hobbies or sports
  • Lack of interest in family
  • Paraphernalia in their rooms or elsewhere
  • Changes in sleep patterns
  • Inexplicable loss of money


Gladstones Clinic is one of very few in the United Kingdom who offer residential treatment for young people between the age of 16 and 17.

Gladstones Can Help You

If your teenager or young person is struggling addiction Gladstones can help. We work with addicts and their families on a daily basis in our residential rehab clinic. We apply our years of experience with the latest integrative treatment models and therapies in our highly successful practice.

Gladstones operates two private residential rehab facilities in the South-West of England, and two in London. Our main office and facilities are located in central Bristol. All  Our clinics provide clients with a private room (en-suite) & full board included in the cost of their residential rehabilitation programme.

If you need to speak to someone right now for a confidential chat call us Freephone on 0808 258 2350 or email –

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