Psychiatry and Clinical Psychopharmacology
Original Article

Why Do Adolescents Relapse? A Multicenter, Cross-sectional Study


Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Kocaeli University, School of Medicine, Kocaeli, Turkey


The Turkish Green Crescent Counseling Center, Istanbul, Turkey


Department of Psychology, Istanbul Kent University, Istanbul, Turkey


Alcohol and Substance Addiction Treatment Center, Moodist Psychiatry Hospital, Istanbul, Turkey

Psychiatry and Clinical Psychopharmacology 2023; 33: 246-253
DOI: 10.5152/pcp.2023.23748
Read: 1311 Downloads: 551 Published: 26 October 2023

Background: Adolescents use drugs once, then use them regularly, then start and stop many times. In addiction treatment, relapse is a major barrier to recovery. Relapse is more common among adolescents and is a major problem. Thus, this study aimed to identify the factors impacting the duration of relapse in adolescents.

Methods: This is a multicenter, cross-sectional study. A total of 157 adolescents who applied to 4 different child and adolescent addiction treatment centers between January 2020 and March 2020 were included in the study. The “Addiction Profile Survey Adolescent Form” was administered to the participants face to face. According to the duration of relapse determined with this form, the cases were analyzed separately as before and after 1 month.

Results: The sample consisted of 112 (71.34%) males and 45 (28.66%) females, with a mean age of 17.1 ± 0.8 years. Cannabis use (P=.010), late treatment initiation (P=.003), less psychosocial (P=.001), outpatient (P=.006), and inpatient (P=.006) treatment history were significantly associated with relapse before 1 month. Cannabis users were approximately 4 times more likely to relapse in less than a month, while ecstasy users were approximately 4 times more likely to relapse over a month (OR=0.26, CI=0.1-0.69), (OR=4.16, CI=1.26-13.78). In the multiple logistic regression analysis performed to determine the factors predicting the duration of relapse, it was found that not attending school (P=.018) and receiving less inpatient treatment (P=.019) predicted relapse occurred within 1 month.

Conclusion: This study is considered remarkable in terms of demonstrating the necessity of early interventions and post-treatment care services. Currently, there are very few studies in the literature that investigate the factors that contribute to relapse in addicted adolescents. According to our literature review, no study examined factors affecting relapse duration in adolescents.

Cite this article as: Kardaş Ö, Şimşek M, Ögel K. Why do adolescents relapse? A multicenter, cross-sectional study. Psychiatry Clin Psychopharmacol. 2023;33(4):246-253.

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