Substance abuse is one thing that has affected the lives of many teens. According to the National Survey on Drugs use in 2018,
Around 4.2 million adolescents of age 12-17 or approx. 15% of the population in America use different types of illicit drug
Approximately 369,000 Americans of age 12-17 or 15% misused their prescription.
Around 460,000 adolescents misused sedatives, tranquilizers, and pain killers.
While young teens have a lower rate of substance abuse, the risk is among younger teens. Here are few alarming signs you must look for:
Inappropriate Eating or Sleeping Pattern:
The National Council of alcohol experts explains that the early signs of alcohol abuse are loss of appetite. In some cases, you might notice a sudden increase in appetite. You might even notice the unusual sleeping patterns; your teen might always be awake at night or has suddenly slept more.
Mood swings or other minor alterations are common among teens, but extreme changes can signify a serious problem. According to the experts, parents should never assume that the mood changes are simply because of growing or a phase change.
Keep a check if your child is suddenly lurking or angry without any reason. Also, changes in personalities from happy to sad indicate a chemical imbalance, hormonal changes, or substance dependency.
Here’s how to help your child:
Stay Calm, Don’t Rush Over Things:
Find the strength to deal with the situation! With shouting, beating, and threatening, you will not achieve anything. Keep in mind that the trouble that has become grief for you and the family is fixable, but you need to handle things calmly and deliberately.
The first step to dealing with this situation is to admit that your child is sick and tell him about your suspicions directly. Say words like, “It seems to me that you are taking drugs; if so, you can discuss with me.”
Make them agree to see a professional; the purpose of this conversation has already been achieved when your child agrees to go for a consultation like a Drug rehab Kentucky. Only a professional can assess how far your child’s illness has gone and provide qualified information on overcoming addiction.
Don’t Set Yourself Up for An Easy Victory.
Most likely, you won’t even get an honest confession! Drug addiction (like alcoholism) is called the “disease of denial” because a sick person does not even admit to himself that he is addicted; it always seems to him that he will give up the habit if he wants to.
So, do not try to control them; don’t try things like locking them in a room key, sending them to another city, and more- this usually does not bring the desired result.
Do Not Try to Fight Alone.
It’s useless if you make this disease a family secret. Most counselors and psychologists are convinced that the chemical treatment process should begin by treating their loved ones. This therapy will work as a self-improvement treatment.
Listen to Your Child and Be Open:
Once your teen has agreed to discuss the topic, you can start the discussion with open-ended questions. For example: What do you understand about the legalization of cannabis? Or How would you describe the situation at your school and in your community about cannabis use?
Give your child the chance to talk about their situation and express their feelings. Use questions that encourage reflection and the expression of feelings and points of view. For example:
How do you feel when this happens?
Why do you think that?
What is troubling you?
It’s unlikely, but teenagers can admit to their parents that they have a drug problem. You need to feel happy to know that they have discussed his problem. Listen to them and find them helpful!