Ways to Encourage Kids to Avoid Illegal Substances

Substances are everywhere. It may be the alcohol in your cupboard, the pill bottles on your shelf, and even the glue with your arts and crafts supplies. These things are all easy for your kids to get their hands on. Find ways to encourage your kids to avoid substances so you can prevent lifelong consequences that can come from taking them.

Seek Professional Help

You don’t have to take on the job alone. You can seek professional help when you’re looking to help your teenager avoid substances. Adolescent substance abuse has many long-term consequences and is extremely dangerous. If you’ve already noticed signs your teens may be experimenting, then it’s best to seek professional help and get them into treatment sooner rather than later.

Avoid Them Yourself

Your kids may be less likely to try substances if they don’t see their parents doing them first. Avoid using substances if necessary and tell your kids about the consequences of them. This may mean avoiding alcohol and stopping smoking. If you do have alcohol or prescription pills in your home, then find places to keep them out of reach of your kids. You should consider the same rules as household safety and poison prevention when it comes to these things.

Have a safety latch or lock on your medicine cabinet. Keep your purse locked in your room if you have medication in it. Keep alcohol bottles in a locked cabinet. You may even need to closely monitor the use of mouthwash, hand sanitizer, and vanilla extract, each of which can contain alcohol and may be used incorrectly by your teenagers.

Help Boost Their Mental Health

Poor mental health can make it easier to turn to substances to try to alleviate feelings of doubt, anxiety, and depression. You need to help boost your child’s mental health so they are less likely to turn to unhealthy habits. Provide healthy meals and snacks that can build a strong mind. Make sure they’re getting enough exercise. Gym class isn’t enough. Take your kids on walks. Bring them outside to play catch. Have them help you in the garden or with yard work. You can even have a dance party inside. There are lots of ways to encourage exercise and get your kids moving.

Have Conversations

One of the best drug prevention tips for teenagers is simply to have a conversation with them. Keep your cool and avoid yelling. Talk to your kids about the dangers of drugs but express that you understand what they’re feeling. Tell them you know it can be difficult to say no when their peers are asking them to partake in different substances. Let them know it’s okay to feel left out, but it isn’t okay to let those feelings control them and make poor decisions.

Remind them that they’re good kids. They’re smart. They’re capable of making good choices, and you love them. Inform them that you’re there to talk if they ever need it and that you hope they don’t think they need to use alcohol or drugs to get friends. They will lead a more productive and healthy life without any of it.

Enroll Them in Volunteer Opportunities

Volunteering is a great way to get your mind off yourself and onto someone else. When your kids see someone else who’s down and out, possibly because of drugs, it can help them realize that it’s not worth it. Enroll your kids in volunteer opportunities working with the homeless or even in hospitals or victim service centers. They’ll get to do some good and realize that they can make a positive impact on the world if they are staying clean and healthy. If they become addicted themselves, they may not be able to help others as they can right now.

Do what you can to encourage your kids to avoid alcohol and other substances. These things can lead them down a dark path. With an open line of communication between you and you being involved, you may be able to spot the signs sooner and get them started with professional help.

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