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New research-based online tool provides guidance and support to help parents intervene with adolescent substance abuse

PHILADELPHIA, Sept. 29, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Leading scientific experts in addiction and behavioral science have teamed with experts in interactive online and film-based content in order to create solutions for parents wanting to intervene with their child's substance use. Derived from the empirically-supported treatment method Community Reinforcement And Family Training (CRAFT), the online course, Parent CRAFT, teaches parents how to interact with their child in new ways. The unique collaboration between the Treatment Research Institute, Dr. Robert J. Meyers, and Cadence Online, takes empirically-studied behavioral science and brings to life an accessible tool for today's parent who is concerned about a child's drug or alcohol use.

Ninety percent of substance use disorders begin before the age of 18. Whether an adolescent or young adult is using casually, in treatment for substance use problems, or returning from a treatment program, parents often are uncertain how to effectively address the drug or alcohol use. Yet, to date, there has been a lack of available evidence-based solutions for parents.

"Dealing with an adolescent or young adult's substance use can take a toll on the entire family, but there are skills parents can learn that have been proven to nudge their children in positive directions," said Dr. Kimberly Kirby, Director of the Parents Translational Research Center at the Treatment Research Institute. "Parent CRAFT brings evidence-based science into a format that works in a useful and meaningful way for parents to truly have an impact in changing their child's behavior."

Parent CRAFT teaches parents how to effectively interact with their children in order to change drug and alcohol behavior. The intervention has three main goals: to improve the relationship between the parent and adolescent or young adult; to reduce the child's problem behaviors; and to help the parent facilitate treatment entry of their child and support them during treatment and recovery.

"By representing these practices through real-life examples in the online Parent CRAFT course, parents now have relatable scenarios to learn the skills necessary to take care of themselves and their family member," said Dr. Robert Meyers, creator of CRAFT and Professor Emeritus Psychology, University of New Mexico – Center on Alcoholism, Substance Abuse and Addiction. "CRAFT is the first program that has a proven intervention style that helps parents and others get their loved ones into treatment. In fact, with CRAFT, 65-75 percent of these children and loved ones get into treatment without ruining relationships or involving massive confrontations."

Through brief, engaging videos and extensive role-playing exercises, parents navigate through five key modules designed to help them understand their child's drug use pattern, improve their communication skills, develop methods of behavior management, and learn when and how to suggest treatment entry.

"Cadence Online is proud to have collaborated with the leading scientists and clinicians in this arena to develop a readily accessible solution for parents facing this challenging issue," said Jim Bosler, Founder and CEO of Cadence Online. "Parent CRAFT gives families the evidence-based tools they need to address problems of substance abuse."

To learn more about Parent CRAFT and to order the course, visit www.cadenceonline.com.

About Treatment Research Institute

Treatment Research Institute has been a leader in the substance use research field, with a belief that science can only be truly impactful when it is used to improve policies, programs and practices. TRI's work focuses on applying research to change behaviors, with the ultimate goal of improving outcomes for individuals, families, and communities affected by addiction. Collaborations with distinguished partners from across the globe have enhanced TRI's quest to advance the ways in which addiction is perceived and cared for. TRI's relentless commitment to discovering and disseminating SOLUTIONS to substance-use problems drives its work, mission, and vision. Learn more at www.tresearch.org.

About Robert J. Meyers, PhD

Dr. Robert J. Meyers has been in the addiction field for 40 years with 23 of those years being at the University of New Mexico. He is currently the director of Robert J. Meyers, Ph.D. & Associates and a Research Associate Professor Emeritus in Psychology at the University of New Mexico's Center on Alcoholism, Substance Abuse and Addiction. Dr. Meyers developed Community Reinforcement and Family Training (CRAFT), the innovative, evidence-based protocol that has been shown to be superior to more traditional interventions in several randomized clinical trials. He has been involved in over a dozen clinical trials funded by the National Institutes of Health, including Project Match and the Clinical Trials Network. Learn more at www.robertjmeyersphd.com.

About Cadence Online

Cadence Online was formed to leverage the experience of their team in both providing exceptional child and adolescent therapy services and in developing leading interactive online video games. The mission is to create highly engaging online courses that teach evidence-based skills to parents and others. Cadence Online is focused on creating alliances with the leading experts in substance abuse and addictions in order to create affordable and readily accessible online courses that provide effective, evidence-based solutions for parents and others. The Founder of Cadence Online is also the CEO of Cadence Child and Adolescent Therapy, a leader in providing evidence-based behavioral health services for families. Learn more at www.cadenceonline.com.

CONTACT: Debra Snyder Treatment Research Institute 215-399-0980 dsnyder@tresearch.org

Source:Treatment Research Institute(TRI)