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Psicologia: teoria e prática

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SILVA, Eroy Aparecida da et al. Adolescence drug use: parent´s fears and reactions. Psicol. teor. prat. [online]. 2006, vol.8, n.1, pp. 41-54. ISSN 1516-3687.

Scarce are the primary prevention programs to the use of drugs aimed at adolescents, mainly those which involve the family, particularly the parents. The way drugs are focused by the media raises many doubts and fears in the families, often increasing their concerns and prejudices. The objective of this study was to investigate the fears and reactions of adolescents' parents in relation to their children's drug use. We prepared a questionnaire comprising 40 questions and applied it to 87 parents of adolescent students (aged 12 to 19). The sample was made up of 73% of mothers with a means age of 42. The most prevalent issues during the conversations were sex (23%), drugs and profession (19% each). The fear of their children's drug use was reported by 94% of the interviewees. Out of the total number of fathers, 32% reported being aware of the use of some kind of drug by their children. Their reactions when they knew about the use were "talking with their children" (81%) and "looking for guidance" (62%). The most frequent feelings were fear (69%) and helplessness (25%). These data should not be generalized, since they were obtained from a convenience sample. However, the study points to the importance of enlarging the programs of primary and secondary prevention, still incipient in Brazil.

Keywords : Family relations; Family; Adolescents; Prevention; Drugs.

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