Parental dating and child attachment
The age range for the interventions that form the basis for the principles of prevention described in this resource is prenatal through 8 years.Collection of data from the National Survey of Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) on age at first use of illegal drugs across the U. begins at age 12 years, with data from 2014 indicating that 3.4 percent of 12- to 13-year-old children have used an illegal drug in the past month (including inappropriate use of prescription drugs), 2.1 percent are current alcohol users, and 1.1 percent are current tobacco users.
The first, overarching principle drawn from the research reviewed for this resource is that intervening early in childhood can alter the life course trajectory of children in a positive direction.
Although vulnerability can occur at many points along the life course, it tends to peak at critical life transitions, which present risks for substance abuse as well as opportunities for intervention.
Thus transitions such as pregnancy, birth, or entering preschool or elementary school are prime opportunities to introduce skills, knowledge, and competencies to facilitate development during those transitions.
Prevention interventions designed specifically for early developmental periods can address these risk factors by building on existing strengths of the child and his or her parents (or other caregivers) and by providing skills (e.g., general parenting skills and specific skills like managing aggressive behavior), problem-solving strategies, and support in areas of the child’s life that are underdeveloped or lacking.
The child’s stage of life, aspects of his social and physical environments, and life events he experiences over time all contribute to the his physical, psychological, emotional, and cognitive development..
How a child responds and adapts to these events is influenced by his or her cognitive, emotional, and social development at that point in time as well as past history, family relationships, and the surrounding world.