What can you do if your child is using illegal or harmful drugs? Whether it’s occasional or regular, drug abuse is serious. Here’s are some steps to take if you suspect your child may be involved.
Know the information
It’s important to understand the research about underage drug abuse. Most first-time drug users are under the age of 18. There are many reasons why they may be participating in substance abuse. For example, sometimes it’s due to peer pressure. It can also be due to stress, emotional struggles, or simple curiosity. There are also many different types of drugs, each with their own side effects and issues. Some of the more common ones are marijuana, amphetamines, or even medications like cough medicine.
Look for warning signs
There are many different signs that indicate drug abuse. Physiological signs can include bloodshot eyes, tiny pupils, or slurred or rapid speech. Pay attention to behavioral changes as well. These can include social isolation, unexplained absences, or illegal behavior. Their health may be affected by issues like sleep disturbances or appetite changes. Although these don’t always confirm drug use as the cause, they may alert you to a problem. You can spot these early warning signs by monitoring their driving, watching for mood changes, or keeping track of their absences.
If you discover your child has been using drugs, talk to them first. Also, do your best to avoid being an enabler. This can happen for several reasons. For example, when a parent denies the situation, acts out of fear, or lies to cover up their child’s actions, they are enabling. Finally, talk to your child’s doctor. They can help you determine if your child needs professional help. There are different options for substance abuse treatment. Most of these involve detoxing, some form of therapy, and possible medication.
Getting help for drug abuse can be a daunting and difficult process. However, it is crucial that you get help if your child is engaging in harmful activity.