Adolescence is usually the time that people are first exposed to drug use. If their drug use is left untreated when they are children, it can continue to be a struggle into adulthood. It is essential to stop drug use when your kids are first exposed to avoid dealing with long-term problems later in life. Don’t wait for them to “grow out of it.”


Protective Measures


Several factors can lead to the increased risk of substance abuse, such as family history, low academic performance, peer pressure, and a lack of connection at school. Instead of feeling shame and guilt surrounding your child developing a substance abuse problem, you should feel empowered by what you can do for your child as a parent. You can make sure your child is receiving academic support, and they do not feel the need to fix their problems with drug use. Family members can also provide a better example for their children by keeping drugs away from the household and entering treatment for any substance abuse problems. You can also build a healthy schedule of the right amount of sleep, nutritious meals, good exercise, and other sources of help for your children, like a counselor, coach, or mentor.


An Open and Honest Talk


Part of helping your kids stay away from drugs and alcohol is keeping an open dialogue with them. You can make practice scripts to prepare them for peer pressure situations; for example, you can help them develop an exit strategy for uncomfortable situations where you can come to pick them up. Help your children understand that avoiding substance abuse is in their best interest. Without substances, they will see positive effects on their academic performance or their personal goals. By knowing your children’s hopes and dreams, you can help give them a better understanding of why drug use may not be the best option. 


Evidence-Based School Programs


When kids feel safe and secure at school, they can take what they learned and apply it in the real world. For example, drug prevention programs can help bring a school together. These classes can teach children how their brain works on drugs, refusal skills, and how substances can affect their lives. Adults have the power to prevent drug use in their homes and at schools while children are still young.


Adolescence can present the beginning of addiction. When kids become exposed to drugs at a young age, they can develop an addiction and end up carrying that addiction with them for years to come. If adults intervene at home and school to prevent drug use, it can save their kids from dealing with these challenges going forward. At Alta Loma, we understand the impact drug use can have on a child, and we are here to help you. While we do not treat children, we can help you find the facility that is right for you. Call (866) 457-3843 to learn more.