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Signs of Teen Drug Use

Teen Drug UseSigns of Teen Drug Use

Teen drug use is a major problem in today’s society, with more and more teens abusing drugs and alcohol for the first time each year. Whether it’s alcohol, marijuana, tobacco, cocaine, heroin, or OxyContin, teenage drug abuse is a sad reality in this country and with no real end in sight. If you suspect your teenager may be experimenting with drugs or alcohol, there are numerous warning signs that each parent should know to better help them spot drug or alcohol abuse. Only by knowing these warning signs like the back of your hand, can you be better prepared to spot drug abuse in your teen, and have the power to put a stop to it before it’s too late. Here are some important warning signs to look out for:

Changed or Erratic Behavior

One of the first things parents should look out for when looking for drug or alcohol abuse is a significant change in your teenager’s behavior. This can include loss of interest in school, sports, or after-school activities. A loss of interest in things your teenage once enjoyed, dropping grades at school, or showing up late or missing school altogether can be red flags for some type of drug abuse. You may also want to look out for changing sleep patterns, a change in appetite, and excessive weight loss or weight gain.

Psychological Changes


Another key warning sign of teen drug use that every parent should look out for are any substantial psychological changes that may be going on in your teen. This can include long bouts of depression, excessive or violent mood swings, extended periods of extreme jubilation, talkativeness, paranoia, zoning out, to name a few. These psychological changes can be tell-tale signs of drug or alcohol abuse and should be closely scrutinized when they become apparent.

Change in Friends

Another important warning sign of teen drug use is an abrupt change in your child’s social circle. If you notice your teenager has suddenly stopped spending time with their usual group of friends and start hanging out with an entirely new social circle, this can sometimes be a sign of substance abuse. While hanging out with new friends is completely normal for any teenager, if these friends happen to be older, or if your child is hesitant to introduce you to them, you have every right to start getting suspicious and asking questions.

Need for Money

Because using drugs or alcohol can sometimes be an expensive habit, if you notice your teen suddenly needing more and more money, as well as money turning up missing, disappearing valuables from the home, unexplained debt, then you should definitely be concerned. Conversely, if you notice your teen suddenly having large sums of money as if out of nowhere, and they don’t have a good reason of why they have that money, it may be possible that their selling drugs in order to support their habit.

Educate Yourself and Take Action

Learning these important warning signs and educating yourself about substance abuse can be some of the best things parents can do to help stop their child’s drug or alcohol addiction. By being an informed parent, you will better be able to spot these early warning signs of substance abuse that could potentially save your child’s life.

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