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Substance Abuse Among Teenagers

The teenage years can be a difficult time for young people as they navigate the complexities of growing up. Unfortunately, many teens are also exposed to substance abuse, which can complicate their lives significantly. Substance abuse among teenagers is a serious problem that can have long-term consequences if it’s not addressed. Alcohol and drug abuse can lead to a lack of education, relationship troubles, poor physical health, and life-threatening complications. Knowing the warning signs for substance abuse in teens and getting help is key to preventing more serious issues down the road.

Warning Signs of Substance Abuse in Teens

Teenagers are undergoing a great deal of change and experiencing intense hormonal and chemical changes within their own bodies. Therefore, it may be difficult to tell when they are exhibiting problematic warning signs of alcohol and drug use or if they are just going through the typical aging process. However, below are some common signs that a teenager may be abusing substances:

  • Frequent loss of appetite: Teens who abuse substances often struggle with poor dietary habits. If a teen isn’t eating at least three meals a day and snacks in between, then they may be using alcohol and other drugs.
  • Strange or new behaviors: Teens who abuse substances often engage in new and unusual behaviors because they’re under the influence. Getting into trouble at school or with the law is a common symptom of substance abuse.
  • Changes in school performance: Most teens who abuse substances have poor academic performance as a result.

Risks of Substance Abuse in Teens

Teenagers who abuse substances are more likely to experience poor mental and physical health as they age. They’re also more likely to engage in risky behaviors and experience problems in their relationships as they try to establish their independence.

Additionally, young adults who abuse substances are also more likely to become pregnant as teenagers due to the increased risk of sexually transmitted diseases and unintended pregnancies. The risks associated with substance abuse are significant, both now and in the future. If teens who abuse substances are able to address their issues early, they can often be prevented from becoming more serious substance abusers.

Ways to Prevent Substance Abuse in Teens

There are a number of ways to help prevent teen substance abuse. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) tells us that if a parent or mentor engages in substance abuse or risky behavior, it increases the odds that the teen will engage in the same activity.

Teenagers often feel a great deal of pressure to have an active social life. This can lead many to engage in substance abuse to relieve the pressure and avoid feeling negatively judged by their peers. Schools and after-school programs that prioritize substance abuse prevention have achieved positive results when it comes to keeping teens away from alcohol and other drugs.

There are also a number of things that can be done for teens if they are experiencing substance abuse. Seeking help early can help prevent more serious issues from developing. Substance abuse is treatable. Professional treatment is available at The Guest House.

Substance use disorder (SUD) doesn’t have an age preference. It can strike anyone at any time. That is what makes SUD such an insidious problem in the world today. Teenagers are just as capable of struggling with substance abuse as anyone else. If you or someone you know is experiencing problems with substance abuse, then getting help right away is the best option. The Guest House can help anyone recover and heal from substance abuse. Call (855) 483-7800 for more information.