Kids and Substance Use
Early adolescence is a time of enormous and often confusing changes for a child, which makes it a challenging time for both your kids and you. Being tuned in to what it's like to be a teen can help you stay closer to your child and have more influence on the choices he or she makes -- including decisions about using drugs or alcohol.
Time and again, kids say their parents are the single most important influence when it comes to drugs. The
message needs to start with you as parents. Kids need to hear about how risky drug use is. Research has shown
that the earlier parents talk to their kids about drug use, the less likely they will be to use and abuse drugs. Even if
their kids have already tried drugs, informed parents can act to save their kids from drug abuse. But there is much to learn.
What you don’t know can put your child at risk. You may think you already know enough about drug culture
because drugs were around when you were growing up. You may have even tried marijuana when you were a teen.
Today, kids know more, are exposed to a greater variety of drugs and drug sources, from friends to music and the
media. Drugs are often cheaper and easier to find for kids today. Educate yourself about the new drug culture and
Alcohol, Substance Abuse and Depression
Marijuana: The Facts Parents Need to Know
Signs and Symptoms of Drug Use
Teen Drinking and Drug Use
Why A Child Uses Drugs
For many parents, bringing up the subject of alcohol is no easy matter. Your young teen may try to dodge the
discussion, and you may feel unsure of how to proceed. There are some tips available to help boost your chances
for a productive conversation. Please note that it is important to think through the issues you want to discuss
before you talk with your teen.
Words Can Work can help parents to start and continue conversations with their kids about drugs and alcohol.
Tips for Parents
Habla Con Tus Hijos: Bilingual Resource for Hispanic Families
Taking Action: Prevention Strategies for Parents
While parent-child conversations about drugs and alcohol are essential, talking isn’t enough- you also need to take
concrete action to help your child resist alcohol and drugs.
Family Guide to Keeping Youth Drug Free
Keeping Hispanic Youth Drug Free
When Treatment is Needed for Youth and Their Families
It has been found that adolescents who enter treatment are more likely to achieve long-term sobriety than those who enter as adults, and the earlier they enter, the more effective the treatment will be.
Addiction Recovery Management Services, Massachusetts General Hospital
Addiction Answers for Parents
Residental Treatment Program, McLean Hospital
The Landing at McLean Hospital
For more information or to discuss addiction concerns please contact Partners Employee Assistance Program at 1-866-724-4EAP.
In case of emergency, please call 911 or your local hospital emergency service.
This content was last modified on: 12/12/2016