Substance abuse is a serious topic that should be handled with extreme caution and consideration when approached. In the end, the best prevention for substance abuse is communication and a sense of openness between the teenager and their parents. However, this is not always possible and sometimes teenagers can be difficult to reason with while going through a rebellious period. The signs of drug abuse can be subtle and hard to decipher, especially for a parent who still remembers their teenager as a small child. If a teenager is a victim of substance abuse, there are many drug rehabs in Arizona that can help to get them on the right track. Here are four tips to help parents and other close adults distinguish normal behavior from potential substance abuse.
#1. Ambiguity in responses
When asked a question such as “How was your day?”, the typical teenager should reply calmly and without much thought. Most days are mundane by nature, but there should be something to report about every once in a while. If a teenager is consistently giving answers such as “It was OK.” day after day without any change, then it is possible that they are hiding something.
#2. Too much information in responses.
Seemingly paradoxically, giving too much information is also a bad sign. If a teenager is giving excessive and irrelevant information consistently when being asked about school or their social life, they may be lying. Liars typically try to give an excess of information to throw off any doubt about their whereabouts or actions when questioned. Parents should try to ask probing questions when in doubt and take into consideration how the teenager responds.
#3. Money gone for no apparent reason.
Teenagers spend money; it’s completely natural. However, when a teenager is constantly low on money without any apparent reason then they may be spending it on drugs. They may give excuses as to where they’re spending the money, but parents should always keep a close eye on the teenager’s finances. If a parent is suspicious of movie night money going to drugs, ask the teenager to bring a receipt home.
#4. Music choices.
Drugs have developed a counter-culture around them and it’s very easy for impressionable teenagers to identify themselves with a certain group that idolizes a certain drug. For example, many hip hop songs reference marijuana or cocaine frequently. Passing references shouldn’t be of much worry, but when a teenager’s musical library consists of mainly drug related counter-culture music, there may be an issue. Parents should keep an eye on what their child listens to.
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