Would it shock you to know you could end up being the biggest drug supplier to your own child? According to DoSomething.org, prescription drugs are the cause of more overdose deaths of teenagers than heroin and cocaine combined. It may be hard to imagine your innocent elementary-age child being tempted in the future by the bottle of painkillers in your bathroom, or that older teen neighbor smoking joints, but it's not far from reality. That's why its important as a parent to have the knowledge of the typical signs of drug use, and to always secure prescription drugs and harmful substances.
Know Your Child
CBS News reports that one in 10 children between the ages of 12 and 17 years of age uses illegal drugs. Every parent wants to believe their child won't be that one. However, if your child should start experimenting, would you be aware? If you are in tune with your child, you are more than likely to notice changes in his sleep pattern, friends and mood that could be the result of drug use or experimentation.
Types of Drugs Most Commonly Used
Marijuana and synthetic marijuana lead the list of the most commonly used drugs by teens, the National Institute on Drug Abuse reports. In 2012, more than 36 percent of seniors reported smoking pot or hashish, while 11 percent reported using the synthetic version. The next most commonly abused drugs were Adderall and Vicodin.
Recently, a drug known on the streets as Molly has been making the news. Molly, which is considered a pure form of Ecstasy, is especially popular for use at clubs and raves, according to DrugAbuse.gov. Unfortunately, it can be very dangerous, as evidenced by the two Electric Zoo concertgoers in New York and a Washington, D.C. college student who died after overdosing on Molly over Labor Day weekend 2013, reported by USA Today.
Don't Ignore Drug Use
Some parents will dismiss drug use as a passing phase and won't intervene even if they discover their children are experimenting. The Washington State Department of Social and Health Services says that is a big mistake, according to the New York Times. When it comes to drug use, early intervention, including admitting your child into a program, is a key step in turning your child away from drugs. In addition to helping your child get off drugs, a rehabilitation center also offers teenagers ways to transform their entire lifestyle and become healthier.
Bored teens are more likely to look around for ways to entertain themselves, so it's important to provide alternates to just hanging out with his buds. For example, Cigna advises to get your child involved in sports, playing for a team.
Parents also tend to want to give their children everything, but this can backfire. A teen with money to burn may be tempted to waste it on drugs. If your child is old enough to work, encourage them to get a job. A quote by Voltaire on Best Drug Rehabilitation founder Per Wickstrom's Tumblr website reads, "Work spares us from three evils: boredom, vice and need." This saying is as true today as it was back in Voltaire's day.