Is It Possible To Prevent Substance Abuse? 3 Ways How

While many substance abusers tend to start using drugs at an early age, and end up becoming addicts before they realize it, it is possible to prevent addiction in the first place. How? Awareness, awareness, awareness! 

Here are 3 ways to prevent substance abuse before it starts. These methods apply to those who are committed to staying sober as well.

1. Awareness about how Addiction starts

There is temptation everywhere, and access to substances is easy. So educating yourself or making your loved ones aware of the risk factors makes it possible to prevent abuse in the first place.

Here are some possible risk factors:

  • Family history of substance abuse, including family disputes
  • Peer pressure and/or bonding experience with friends and in parties
  • Toxic relationships between parents and children, or spouses/partners
  • Exposure to school or workplace pressures such as bullying and discrimination
  • Stress from psychological, sexual or physical abuse

While these are just a few possible factors that might induce someone into abusing substances, becoming aware of such factors in your own (or your loved one’s) life goes a long way toward preventing drug abuse.

2. Awareness of Coping Mechanisms

A large number of substance abusers start using drugs or alcohol as a coping mechanism for the stress that they encounter in their daily lives, and not knowing how to handle it. Becoming aware that there are hundreds of effective coping mechanisms that can be used to not only handle stress but to enhance their life physically, mentally and psychologically can be life changing.

Some popular coping mechanisms:

  • Building better habits including diet and exercise
  • Creating positive relationships
  • Learning mindfulness practices such as yoga and meditation
  • Daily routines such as art, journaling or other creative pursuits
  • Volunteering for charity or other positive social causes

Building your own tool kit of coping mechanisms will help develop a strong daily routine that keeps you on track and not get derailed into pursuing other options such as alcohol or drugs.

3. Awareness of Counseling and Therapy

We are living at a time when going to therapy is no longer a stigma, but a necessity. Modern life, with all its high speed, high tech advances, is also creating a tremendous amount of stress and anxiety in our lives. Becoming aware that help is just within reach is the best thing that can help people avoid seeking substances to cope. 

Here are some effective therapy approaches:

  • Psychotherapy, commonly called talk therapy
  • Behavioral therapies, such as cognitive behavior therapy or dialectical behavior therapy
  • Holistic therapies, such as yoga, meditation and tai chi
  • Group therapies, such as adventure therapy and psychoeducational therapy
  • Family therapy and couples therapy

Seeking counseling as soon as you recognize stress or other mental issues in yourself or your loved one is the best way to prevent substance abuse.


Get Help Now!

Our expert therapists and clinicians at California Prime understand substance abuse and mental health issues, and deliver treatment with care and compassion. If you would like to prevent further substance abuse and are committed to staying sober for the long term, do yourself a favor and reach out to talk about options. 


Help is available 24/7! Text us at 949-749-3026 or Call us at 866-415-6313

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Alyssa Mueller


Alyssa Mueller is an Associate Clinical Social Worker. She holds a Master of Social Work with a concentration in Community Mental Health from California State University of Fullerton as well as a Bachelors of Arts in Communication Studies with an emphasis on intercultural and interpersonal communication from California State University of Long Beach. Compassion, empowerment and unconditional positive regard are the foundations of her clinical practice, Alyssa has a passion for helping others and her priority is to hold space for clients to feel heard, to feel safe and to find fulfillment and self-love on their recovery journey. Alyssa specializes in addiction treatment, self-esteem building, mindfulness practices, grief and loss, trauma informed care, and self-compassion as well as individual and family therapy. She has extensive experience working with high risk populations in various clinical settings such as partial hospitalization, intensive outpatient care, outpatient treatment, schools, and community outreach. Alyssa uses a client centered and holistic approach to address the client as a whole person in order to help them to feel empowered and facilitate their confidence and independence.

Charee Marquez

LMFT - Clinical Director

Charee has worked in the recovery field for 10 years.Charee is dedicated to supporting and inspiring clients to live a healthy lifestyle filled with meaning and purpose.Charee has extensive clinical experience within the recovery field in both inpatient and outpatient settings.She specializes in working with individuals and families affected by the disease of addiction however she has also clinical experience in assisting individuals,couples and families in working through a variety of concerns,including: depression,anxiety,relationship & communication issues,substance abuse,grief & loss,trauma, life transitions, and many others.Charee works with each client to specialize their treatment plan with what works best for the client in a compassionate and effective way. She emphasizes the strength of every individual client and fosters an environment of personal growth and internal healing from a mind, body and spiritual approach.Charee received her Bachelor of Arts from Seton Hall University, Majoring in Psychology and Minoring in Women and Gender Studies, in addition to her Masters in Marriage and Family Therapy from the University of Southern California.

Stephen Carmel

Founder & CEO

I began my journey to recovery back in 2011 when I moved to California from New York.Along wiht my recovery and beginning a new way of life,I began to develop a heart for others struffling with sobriety.My journey to California was filled with many trials and lessons learned, but most of all, personal growht.I truly believe i would not have found success if I didn’t come to California.I started CPR as a way to work with people in recovery on a daily basis and it evolved into something much more beautiful. I have also come to realize that my own personal happiness and recovery depends on being involved in the lives of people in recovery. Helping others recover is a cornerstone of many 12 step programs, as it is here. Giving back to those still suffering, is the only way not to lose what you have gained. It is the paradox that we live by every day.