When your kids go back to school after the summer break, you want to prepare them in every way possible. Fall clothes? Check. School supplies? Check. But if your child is starting to use drugs or alcohol, all of your hopes for a successful school year could be crushed before classes even begin. If you’ve noticed unwelcome behavior or personality changes in your child, there’s a far more critical checklist than one that lists backpacks and pencils. We’re talking about the sometimes subtle signs of a drug problem that could derail a once-promising academic year. To learn more about the signs your child has a drug problem, contact Promises Behavioral Health today.
Do They Have Drugs in Their Possession?
If you’ve found marijuana or pills in your child’s sock drawer, this is a pretty good indicator that your child has a drug problem. You can use the Internet to research whether the pills are prescription medications or something else. You can also ask your teen. Furthermore, you may also want to look for paraphernalia relating to drug use. Syringes, burnt teaspoons, and tin boxes can all indicate that your teen has been using drugs.
Have Their Grades Changed?
More signs your child has a drug problem focus on their behavior. They may be jittery in the morning, then calm in the evening, or stare at you with a glazed expression. In addition, if your child has been a straight-A student up until a few weeks ago when their grades dropped to C’s or D’s, that may indicate a problem. That said, a significant change in your child’s grades may be completely unrelated. As a result, it’s vital to tread carefully.
A change in friend groups may also indicate a problem. If your teen abandons childhood friends in favor of a rougher crowd or stopped participating in social activities altogether, your teen may be using drugs.
Other signs your child has a drug problem include:
- Evasive answers when you ask where your teen has been
- Memory problems
- Unexplained injuries
- Unexplained items or money disappearing from around the house
- Changes in weight
- Weaker immune system
Staying out later than normal may also indicate a problem with drugs or alcohol.
What To Do if You See Signs Your Child Has a Drug Problem
The first thing that you should do if you see the signs that your child is using drugs is to talk to them. Many of the signs above, by themselves, don’t always indicate a drug problem. They could mean that your teen is struggling with a mental illness, or being bullied.
When you want to talk to your teen about their behavior, tread carefully. Look for convenient times to talk for both of you, so neither of you feels rushed. Try to keep your mind open and stay calm and curious about what they have to say. Engage your teen by asking open-ended questions, so that you get more than a simple “yes” or “no” answer. It’s also vital that you listen actively so that your teen knows that you understand what they are saying. When you listen actively, you don’t interrupt until they’re done speaking. Then, you sum up what they’re saying so that you’re both on the same wavelength.
If your teen is using drugs or alcohol, the next step is to get them treatment. At Promises Behavioral Health, we provide treatment for a variety of addictions, including:
- Alcohol addiction treatment
- Heroin addiction treatment
- Cocaine addiction treatment
- Opioid addiction treatment
- Benzo addiction treatment