Teens experience many changes and challenges in adolescence. They can be impulsive and might engage in risky or dangerous behavior. A teen’s brain is rapidly developing and growing, and it receives and retains a large amount of information every day. Some teens are susceptible to peer pressure, which puts them at high risk of trying drugs or alcohol. Depending on the drug, your teen can become addicted after just one try.
Teens using household products
Drugs and alcohol might not be visible in your teen’s bedroom, but there are many household products that some teens use to get high. Kids are drinking alcohol extracted from hand sanitizer, which results in serious health complications.
Nutmeg is a spice that is ingested or smoked in large quantities for its euphoric effects. Mikaela Conley wrote an article on nutmeg being used as a hallucinogenic for ABCNews, (2010), which states, “Nutmeg contains myristicin, a natural compound that has mind-altering effects if ingested in large doses. The buzz can last one to two days and can be hallucinogenic, much like LSD.” It causes seizures, cardiac damage, and death.
Cough syrup contains an ingredient called dextromethorphan (DXM), which is a legal cough suppressant found in many over-the-counter cough syrups. In high doses, it acts as a “dissociative anesthetic” like ketamine or PCP. According to an article published for the University of Maryland, Center for Substance Abuse Research, “high-dose chronic use of DXM can lead to the development of toxic psychosis – a mental condition characterized by a loss of contact with reality along with a confused state – as well as other physiological and behavioral problems.”
Signs your teen might be using drugs or alcohol
- Isolates him or herself
- Changes in physical appearance
- Drastically changes in weight
- Dilated pupils, bloodshot eyes
- Shakes, tremors
- Disruptive sleep patterns
- Skips school
- Frequently gets in trouble
- Mood changes
Drugs can cause your teen to become verbally abusive and aggressive. He or she could become destructive and destroy things in your home. A teen that has a drug problem will withdraw from family and friends and spend a lot of time alone. Sudden bad behavior in school can be indicative of drug abuse. Depression, anxiety, ADHD, and other mental health conditions can lead to drug use as a way to cope.
Drug and alcohol use can have detrimental effects on your teen’s brain. Do not shame your teenager – he or she needs help. If you or a loved one is struggling with substance abuse or addiction, get help today. Addiction is isolating, but you are not alone. There is hope in recovery.
The Fort Worth Recovery umbrella covers medically supervised detox, as well as residential programs for men and women alike. Our programs are abstinence-based and combine a 12-step approach with a strong mental health component, integrating cutting-edge techniques such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy (EMDR), Somatic Experiencing, and Motivational Interviewing. For more information or to start your healing journey, please fill out a contact request form and one of our recovery experts will connect with you shortly.