Your involvement makes a difference.
If you suspect that your teenager is using substances, it’s important to address the issue as soon as possible. Here are some tips that may be helpful:
1. Look for signs: Pay attention to any changes in your teenager’s behavior, such as mood swings, changes in sleeping or eating patterns, sudden decrease in academic performance, loss of interest in hobbies or friends, unexplained injuries or accidents, etc.
5. Set clear boundaries and consequences: Let your teenager know that substance use is not acceptable and that there will be consequences for continued use. Be clear about what those consequences will be, and follow through if necessary.
6. Provide support: Offer your teenager support and resources to help them stop using substances. This may include counseling, support groups, or rehabilitation programs.
Remember, it’s important to approach this issue with empathy and understanding. Your teenager may be struggling with underlying issues that are leading to substance use, and they need your support to overcome these challenges.
There are several protective factors that have been found to be effective in preventing teen substance use. Here are some of the most important ones:
1. Strong parent-child relationships: Research has consistently shown that strong, positive relationships between parents and children are key protective factors against substance use. Parents who are involved in their children’s lives, communicate openly and honestly with them, and provide a supportive and nurturing home environment are more likely to have children who avoid substance use.
Remember that no single protective factor is guaranteed to prevent substance use in teenagers, but by implementing several of these protective factors, parents can help create an environment that is less conducive to substance use.