Tobacco, alcohol and other drugs
The use of alcohol tobacco or other illegal substances place a young person at great risk physically, emotionally and legally.
Simple tips for parents and other interested adults:
- Set rules with clear consequences
- Praise and reward good behavior for compliance and enforce consequences for non-compliance.
- Know where your teen is and what he or she will be doing during unsupervised time.
- Talk to your teen- find out more about school, their friends and interests.
- Keep teens engaged in after school activities or programs.
- Discuss your core values and expectations with your teen.
- Spend time together as a family regularly and be involved in your kid's lives.
- Learn the facts about marijuana, underage drinking and other drug use so you are able to talk to your teen about the harmful effects
- Get to know your teen’s friends and their parents.
- Stay in touch with the adult involved in your teen’s life (coaches, employers, teachers) and ask them to let you know of any changes in your teen.
It is also important to be aware of potential signs of substance abuse.
- Changes in friends
- Negative changes in schoolwork, truancy, or declining grades
- Increased secrecy about possessions, activities and friends
- Use of incense or room deodorizer to hide smoke or other odors
- Change in clothing choices and or clothes that highlight drug use
- Need to borrow money, missing money or unapproved ATM withdrawals
- Evidences of drug paraphernalia such as pipes, rolling papers, etc. or inhalant products (common household products, rags and paper bags)
- Use of eye drops to cover up bloodshot eyes or use of mouthwash or breath mints to cover up alcohol
- Missing prescription drugs - especially narcotics and mood stabilizers