Know the signs of substance use:

Sometimes it is difficult to distinguish between typical teenage moodiness or
angst and the signs of substance use. If your teenager exhibits any of the following, pay attention and take action if the behavior is prolonged or appears to worsen.


Changes in Personality or Behavior
• Lack of interest in school, sports or other activities that used to be important
• Withdrawal, isolation from family or friends
• Sudden drop-off in grades
• Emotional changes – feeling sad, fearful, irritable, or argumentative
• Changes in sleep habits


Changes in Physical Health
• Lack of energy and motivation
• Change in eating habits

• Neglected appearance – lack of interest in clothing, grooming, or looks


What You Can Do
Start by taking time to talk. A strong, close relationship with parents and other trusted adults is a powerful way to help young people make safe, healthy choices.
It is never too late to strengthen relationships and open up the lines of communication. Try these tips:
• Make time to talk
• Listen – without judgment
• Ask open-ended questions to understand more
• Recognize and validate feelings
• Discuss expectations and boundaries
• Remain calm, regardless of what your teen tells you
• Support one another

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