Drugs and Alcohol

From casual use of marijuana to the heroin and opioid epidemic and prescription drug abuse, parents have a lot to worry about. Substance abuse can alter your child’s personality and brain chemistry and can derail their future. You might be wondering: How do I know if my child is using drugs? How do I talk to my teen about heroin? How can I help my child overcome prescription drug abuse?

These videos offer parental support and information on topics such as how to recognize the signs of substance abuse, how to handle heroin or opioid use, how to keep your child from abusing prescription drugs, what to say to your child who thinks marijuana is “no big deal”, and other ways in which you can help your child grow up with a healthy attitude toward drugs and alcohol.

My Teen Says Everyone is Using. Is This True?

Karen Jarczyk
Prevention Director
360 Youth Services
1305 W. Oswego Road
Naperville, IL 60540

kjarczyk@360youthservices.org
630.961.2992 ext 225
www.360youthservices.org
www.ThePowerofChoice.info

My Teen Says Everyone Is Using. Is This True?

Some teens and even adults seem to think this is true, but it is not. Data collected annually through surveys taken at our local area high schools clearly indicate that the majority of students are making healthy choices about alcohol, tobacco and other drugs.

So why is it so hard for some to believe?

Health is quiet. No one gossips about health, or spreads rumors about someone’s healthy choices, no one shouts down the hallway that so and so was babysitting or working out, or home have dinner with the family. Health doesn’t make the papers, or catch the attention of police. Health is just quiet and goes about its business… doing the many healthy, normal and significant things most teens do from day to day.

Research indicates that if a person is using or hanging out with people who are using, they are likely to have a perception that more of their peers use. You may want to suggest your teen take a step back and try to see the bigger picture…look at the whole student body. It might be the perfect time to remind your teen why you do not want them using and what your family’s values and expectations are. You may want to ask if they are concerned about someone’s use, and if you can help them reach out on behalf of that someone.

Research also demonstrates that when we consistently acknowledge and remind teens that most students are making healthy choices related to alcohol, tobacco and other drugs, we can actually grow the number of youth in our community who are making healthy choices. We can empower and support those who are making healthy choices to know they are not alone. We can encourage those on the fence to make healthy choices. Teens who are actively using and/or are in the process of addiction obviously need other resources and care.

So bottom line: The majority of students make healthy choices about alcohol, tobacco and other drugs. If you would like to see the data or learn more about this topic, check out the website under my contact information.

DISCLAIMER:
Conversations with experts are intended for general information only, and are not meant to provide specific advice, diagnosis, and does not constitute professional care. If this is an emergency, please dial 911 immediately.