Identify Substance Abuse is the first step towards Substance Abuse Prevention
Mood and Behavioral Changes
Physical Signs of Substance Abuse
Tolerance Build-up and Withdrawal
Signs of Drug Problems
When Does Alcohol Use Become Alcohol Abuse?
Signs of Prescription Drug Abuse
- Wrecked health: People who abuse prescription drugs often use them in ways that damage their health. For example, they may crush and snort painkillers, mix them with alcohol, or take them without a prescription. Doing so can cause organ damage, breathing problems, heart problems, and even death.
- Changes in mood: Someone who abuses prescription drugs might experience sudden changes in mood, such as frequent irritability, aggression, or depression.
- Changes in appetite: People who abuse prescription drugs may eat less because of the drugs’ side effects, like nausea. They may also consume more calories when taking stimulants or other drugs that increase their appetite.
- Changes in sleeping habits: Prescription drugs can have different effects on sleep. Some, like painkillers, may make you drowsy. Others, like stimulants, can make it easier to stay awake.
- Changes in social activities: Someone who abuses prescription drugs may start to avoid social activities, especially ones that involve risk, such as attending sports events, where they might get caught by a teacher or coach.
- Increased moodiness: People who abuse prescription drugs may become more irritable and moody because of the drugs’ effects, even while they are sober.
- Changes in school performance: Someone who abuses prescription drugs may struggle with school performance, such as low grades and a higher probability of dropping out.
How Can I Decrease the Likelihood of Abusing Prescription Drugs?
- Be aware of the risks of mixing substances: Be aware that mixing substances can increase the risk of an overdose or other dangerous consequences.
- Seek help if you have a problem: Don’t be afraid to seek help if you notice you or a loved one is struggling with a substance abuse problem.
- Take advantage of prevention programs: Schools and communities commonly offer programs to educate students about the dangers of substance abuse.
- Get involved in prevention programs. If you’re a parent, you can also help your child avoid abusing prescription drugs.
Adderall Abuse Prevention in School
- Excessive tiredness: Some prescription drugs, such as Adderall and Ritalin, make people feel more alert and less tired. This can lead to people staying up late or taking the drug during school hours.
- Changes in eating habits: A significant number of prescription drugs make users feel hungry. Some people may take these drugs during school hours and then skip meals to avoid gaining weight.
- Changes in restlessness or mood: People who abuse prescription drugs may appear more restless or moody.
- Changes in academic performance: Students who abuse prescription drugs may struggle with schoolwork, such as low grades and a higher probability of dropping out.
- Changes in social activities: Students who abuse prescription drugs may start to avoid social activities, especially ones that involve risk, such as attending sports events, where they might get caught by a teacher or coach.
- Changes in sleeping habits: Students who abuse prescription drugs may sleep more or less to avoid taking the medication during school hours.
- Changes in handwriting: Students who abuse prescription drugs may write more neatly, perhaps because they can concentrate better on their schoolwork while on the drugs.
How to Prevent Underage Drinking
- Keep alcohol out of the house: The best way to prevent underage drinking is to simply not have any alcohol in the house. If your family has friends over who drink, make it clear that you have no alcohol in the house.
- Talk to your child about alcohol: Talk to your child about the dangers of alcohol abuse when they’re old enough to understand.
- Tell your child to say no to drinking: Make it clear to your child that they should never drink when they’re under the age of 21.
- Take your child to programs designed to prevent underage drinking.
What Can Parents Do To Prevent Youth from Substance Abuse?
Talk to your children about the dangers of drugs and alcohol
Establish rules for social events
Be present and request frequent check-ins
Don’t shame, but rather show love
Provide alternatives for coping and stress relief
Offer ongoing education on the dangers of substance abuse
Be an active listener and provide a safe space to discuss emotions
Watch for signs of depression or anxiety
Don’t be afraid of behavioral health services
Identifying the Signs of Substance Use Disorders and Reduce Risk Factors
Prevention and Treatment Services for Prescription Drug Addiction
If you suspect someone you know has a prescription drug addiction, there are treatment options available. Many people with prescription drug addictions are able to quit with the help of therapy and medications.
Medication-assisted treatment (MAT) is a therapy option that combines behavioral therapy with medications such as naltrexone, methadone, or buprenorphine. In MAT, patients take drugs under a doctor’s supervision. These drugs reduce cravings, help people quit, and make withdrawal easier if people relapse.
Some people may also participate in a combination treatment, which includes therapy along with medication. Behavioral therapy focuses on changing destructive thoughts, feelings, and habits. It can help people understand their addiction and the negative impacts it has on their lives.
How to Help a Son Who Is Addicted to Drugs and Alcohol