Aliso Viejo, Calif. – May 3, 2019 – Former Baywatch Star Jeremy Jackson was around 12 years old when he took his first drink and began experimenting with drugs. At the time, he seemed to have everything going for him, including a role on the hit 90s TV show as David Hasselhoff’s son Hobie. He had no idea it would lead to years of drug and alcohol addiction and multiple stints in rehab.
“There is no way I’ve survived what I’ve gone through, the highs and lows, to not share that experience,” Jackson told the crowd. “I think I’m here to do that. I show my scars so others can heal.”
Jeremy’s story is available on YouTube at https://youtu.be/iJpdh_Hc4cM
Jackson was one of several storytellers who shared his experiences with underage drinking as a part of the community event, “From Underage Drinking to Addiction: Stories and Stats We Can’t Ignore” hosted by Laguna Treatment Hospital at the Norman P. Community and Senior Center in Mission Viejo on April 29. The entire event is available for viewing on YouTube as well.
The event also included a Q&A with an experts panel discussing the disease of addiction and resources for parents and teens in the community, including National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence – Orange County and Social Model Recovery Systems and OC Revive.
The event was held in support of SAMHSA’s Communities Talk initiative for town-hall meetings nationwide.
“Parents may think, ‘this would never happen to my kid,’ but surveys from our local schools show otherwise,” said Bob Hails, CEO of Laguna Treatment Hospital. Unfortunately, we see people every day whose addiction started with underage drinking. Alcohol addiction is still the number one reason why people seek treatment at our hospital.”
Findings from the most recent California Healthy Kids Survey found the following for Orange County students:
? 5 percent of 7th graders currently drink or do drugs
? 10 percent of high school juniors have been very drunk or high 7 or more times
? 36 percent of 11th graders have drank to get drunk
Jackson now encourages parents to learn more about the disease of addiction and to never give up on a child who is struggling with it.
“If you had a kid who had cancer you would do everything and anything…to make sure they don’t die from it,” he said. “You have to do the same thing with drugs and alcohol especially if it gets nasty.”
About Laguna Treatment Hospital
Laguna Treatment Hospital is part of the American Addiction Centers’ family of treatment center. AAC is a leading provider of inpatient and outpatient substance use treatment services. We treat adults who are struggling with drug addiction, alcohol addiction, and co-occurring mental/behavioral health issues. We currently operate substance abuse treatment facilities located throughout the United States. These facilities are focused on delivering effective clinical care and treatment solutions. For more information, please find us at AmericanAddictionCenters.org or call 1-800-Alcohol. You can also follow us on Twitter @AAC_Tweet.