Most teens come into contact with drugs in some form or another at some point in their life. If they do decide to take them (the majority of teens don’t) it might be a case of rebellion, and the need to fit in. Some might use them as a way to relax, get high, and lose their inhibitions. It could even be down to curiosity. A chance to experiment with different drugs and see what it’s like.
As a parent, it’s a good idea to fully understand the facts about drugs. It can often help to sit down and talk to your teen about drugs and the the risks and effects different drugs have. These conversations will help...
IS IT TIME FOR A NATIONAL DEBATE ON TEENAGERS AND ALCOHOL?
Police have called for a "national debate" over parental responsibility after saying that seven out of ten underage children caught drinking in a popular seaside resort in Cornwall were given the alcohol by their parents.
Devon and Cornwall Police said that 70% of teenagers caught drunk and disorderly by officers in Newquay this summer said they were sent to Cornwall with alcohol, rather than attempting to buy it in local shops. Though some parents were shocked when they found out from officers that their children had been behaving badly, other parents were arrogant and abused officers who confiscated the booze, saying they were spoiling their child's "fun...
By Michele O’Connor, mum of: Calum, 12, Millie, 9, Alfie, 7 and Tess, 4.
As the Family Planning Association launches a campaign highlighting the risks to sexual health caused by binge drinking, parents need to talk to their teens about a sensible approach to booze.
Do you know if your teen has tried their first drink yet – or been drunk? Chances are the answer’s yes. On average, UK children have their first alcoholic drink at 13 and, by just over 14, hundreds have been drunk for the first time.* A recent survey of 15 and 16 year olds carried out recently by the Drinkaware Trust**revealed that:
- 60% regard drinking as a normal part of growing up.
- Half of all 11 to 15-year-olds have already tried at least one alcoholic drink with their...
Many parents of teenagers worry about the influence their children’s friends can have. In fact we carried out some research which found that most parents felt they were not the biggest influence on their teenagers, believing that their peers held that top slot.
Parents worry about what their children learn from their friends and the effects of peer pressure.
“Our son’s out of control, he’s been suspended from school twice, and is in a really bad crowd,” one distraught parent told us.
Parents are concerned that the teenage years can start long before children actually hit 13 and when children reach ten they can seem to grow up very fast, shutting out their parents and wanting to spend more time with their friends.
Then, by the time...
Parents told Parentline Plus how they dealt with the issue of alcohol and their children.
"Allowing them to try small amounts of alcohol at home appears to take the novelty out of drink and seems better than banning alcohol completely. I have said to them if they want to try alcohol to do so when I am around. If there are any problems then at least I am on hand."
"My daughter seems to have a very 'clean' view on drugs and sees cigarettes as drugs. Probably the stories of mum's raucous nights out have added to putting her off wanting to get drunk! I don't really know where she's got her 'sensible' views from but we do talk openly."
"I think I've been really lucky with my daughter who is now 17. We've not had any strops or tantrums,...
Don’t wait until the teen years to learn about drug risks. Read our essential information, produced in association with FRANK:
As a parent, it’s important to understand why your child may experiment with drugs and the risks and harms associated with the most commonly-used illegal substances. Understanding the facts about drugs will help you to communicate with your son or daughter to inform them of the risks, and help them to protect themselves from harm. It will also help you keep a cool head in a crisis. A supportive family relationship can make all the difference in preventing drug problems from developing.
Talking about drugs:
When you’re talking to your children about drugs, try to put your own feelings to one side. It’s natural to feel worried or...
Discovering that your child is taking drugs can leave you feeling worried, guilty and isolated. However, it’s important to remember that you’re not alone – many other parents will have found themselves in a similar position, and there’s lots of help available. Don’t blame yourself – there are lots of reasons why children become involved in drugs. This is not a sign that you’re a bad parent, and there is no reason why you should feel ashamed or try to hide the problem.
Drugs services, counselling services and self-help groups offer support to your child at any stage, whether or not they are ready to change their behaviour. If you feel there is a problem then don’t delay in seeking help
For more information visit the FRANK website, where you can find details...
So, how do you know if your child is taking drugs? The following changes in behaviour or appearance could be a sign that something is wrong. However – even if you think you’ve noticed some or all of these signs, don’t jump to conclusions. It may not mean that your child is taking drugs – it could just be teenage hormones.
- Your child may start asking you for money, or cash could start going missing with no indication of what has been bought
- You may find unusual equipment lying around the house, such as torn cigarette packets, small sealable bags or empty aerosols
- They may experience a lack of appetite or you could notice sores or rashes around the mouth or nose
- Your child may experience mood swings, start staying out late, or begin socialising...
I’ve discovered that my child is smoking cannabis – what are the risks associated with this drug?
Answer: Cannabis is the most widely used illegal drug in Britain. Smoking it can leave users feeling chilled out, optimistic and talkative. However, it also has hallucinogenic effects and can therefore lead to paranoia and anxiety. There’s also increasing evidence of a link between cannabis and mental health problems such as schizophrenia, while around 10% of users develop a psychological dependence on the drug. Heavy use can lead to concentration problems, while some users begin to feel tired all the time and lack motivation. It is a particularly risky drug for anyone with heart problems as it increases the heart rate and can affect blood pressure, and can also...
Three brave parents speak about the traumatic experiences they have dealt with since their children started taking drugs.
Living in Turmoil
"From a truly delightful child, loving son and brother, he was the most caring and kind son any mother could have wished for; we all adored him. Now our lives are a roller coaster; never knowing what he is up to and never truly trusting him. He doesn’t seem to care about anything or anyone, least of all himself.
From being healthy, good looking and sociable, he is now thin, spotty and reclusive. It has been the most heartbreaking experience in all my life to see my beloved son gripped by the evils of drugs, not to mention the associated lying and deceitfulness that also came with his habits.
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Drugs and alcohol
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