Risk reduction therapy for adolescents: Targeting substance use and HIV/STI-Risk behaviors

Michael R. McCart, Ashli J. Sheidow, Elizabeth J. Letourneau

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

This paper describes a family-based intervention for addressing both substance use and unprotected sexual behavior in adolescents presenting for outpatient substance use treatment. The intervention combines contingency management (CM) for adolescent substance use, which is a behavioral intervention modeled on the Community Reinforcement Approach, with a sexual risk reduction protocol that mirrors aspects of the CM model. As a family-based intervention, caregivers attend every session and actively collaborate with the therapist to address their youth's behavior problems. The treatment is criterion-based with treatment duration determined by the youth's achievement of reduced substance use and unprotected sexual behavior goals. A case study describes the implementation of this treatment with an adolescent presenting a history of polysubstance use and unprotected sexual intercourse. Following the adolescent and caregiver's participation in weekly sessions, the adolescent demonstrated improvements in substance use, unprotected sexual behavior, and other behavior problems. Clinical summary data from two outpatient clinics reveal similar positive outcomes for youth receiving the intervention. This paper illustrates the potential utility of an integrated treatment approach targeting substance use and unprotected sexual behavior in an adolescent population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)161-175
Number of pages15
JournalCognitive and Behavioral Practice
Volume21
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2014

Keywords

  • Adolescents
  • HIV/STI prevention
  • HIV/STI risk behavior
  • Substance use

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology

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