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Look for These Warning Signs for Teen Drug Abuse

It is difficult to find out whether your teenaged child is using drugs or not. Proper communication is one of the most potent tools to avoid teen drug abuse. Talking to your teenaged children can be challenging, but having a meaningful conversation about alcohol and drugs is key to keep your young children safe and healthy. Also, it is important as a parent, that you remain vigilant and identify the threatening signs of any drug abuse, so that you can offer your children necessary help that they need in the right time.

If you are worried about teen drug abuse and suspect that your teen child might also be indulging in drugs, then here are few common warning signs that you may observe.

Changes in Behavior

Normally, the first signs of using drugs that you can see is behavioral change. Few behavioral changes may clearly indicate that your teen has now started using drugs which include:

  • Staying away from extracurricular activities
  • Acting secretive.
  • Always demand for privacy.
  • Avoids eye contact
  • Becoming uncooperative, defiant or hostile
  • Changing friends
  • Complaints from classmates, teachers
  • Decreased interest in all activities and hobbies
  • Increased illegal behavior
  • Involving in fights at school
  • No respect for authority
  • Poor performance in school/college.
  • Psychological Changes
  • Remains aloof from family or friends
  • Unexplained disappearance.

Also, many abused drugs can be psychotropic and hence mood or personality changes are also very common signs of a drug abuser. They are as follows:

  • Being fearful for no obvious reason
  • Dangerous highs and lows
  • Decreased motivation
  • Dishonest or manipulative behavior
  • Drowsiness followed by high energy
  • Frequent emotional instability or mood swings
  • Laughing without any reason
  • Low energy or lethargy
  • Memory problems.
  • Obnoxious and being unusually loud
  • Poor concentration.
  • Rapid-fire or slurred speech.
  • Unexplained changes in personality or attitude.

Health Problems

Number of health issues often occur due to drug abuse such as:

  • Accidents or injuries
  • Appetite changes.
  • Constipation
  • Coordination problems
  • Excessive thirst
  • Frequent illness
  • Headache
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Nosebleeds
  • Runny nose
  • Seizures
  • Sleep disturbances.
  • Shakes or tremors
  • Sudden weight gain or loss
  • Sweating


If your teen child is in really abusing drugs, then you may notice few of these signs:

  • Bloodshot eyes.
  • Cuts, Bruises and sores
  • Constant scratching
  • Poor coordination
  • Poor hygiene.
  • Teeth clenching.

Few other indications to notice

There are many other visible signs that you must look for drug use, if you’re really worried about your teen child using drugs. They are as follows:

  • Finding drug paraphernalia
  • Finding drug residue
  • Finding hidden drugs stashes or alcohol
  • Missing cash or any other resources (i.e., certain valuable items that may be pawned in exchange for drugs)
  • Missing medications, cigarettes or alcohol etc.
  • Smelling strong perfumes or incense within personal space of your teenager

Of course, it is not necessary that all the signs that have been listed above will directly point to only drug abuse. Few signs can also be an indicator of many other unrelated problems too. However, the more you know about various signs, it is likely that your teen child is using drugs.

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