Drug addiction is an illness that can impact all ages and demographics. Teens are at particular risk. If you know how to spot the signs of teen drug addiction, you’ll be able to help teens find treatment sooner. Here are some of the most common signs to look for if you’re worried that a teen is abusing or addicted to drugs.
Changes in Style and Grooming
For the most part, teenagers pay close attention to the way that they look. Whether they dress in all black or take care to style their hair each morning, this is their way of presenting their personality to the world. One of the most common signs of teen drug addiction is changing that personal style.
This can happen for several reasons. First, teens may begin to experience sleep cycle problems because of addiction. When morning comes, they’re in a rush and don’t have time to style or groom themselves as normal.
Teens may also struggle with addiction side effects like depression or anxiety. This can cause them to spend less time on their outward appearance.
Rapid Weight Fluctuations
Drug addiction can cause a number of internal health changes that aren’t always visible to parents and loved ones. However, weight is one of the more obvious external signs of drug addiction. Drug addiction can often lead to rapid weight loss or weight gain.
Of course, it’s entirely possible for teens to gain or lose weight for plenty of reasons outside of addiction. However, many drugs can impact weight. Stimulants like cocaine and Ritalin can boost metabolism, but depressants can suppress it. If teens are using drugs rather than eating well or playing sports, that can also have an impact on weight maintenance.
Drug addiction can cause teenagers to alter their behaviors. It can even lead to changes in personality. Teens who are normally bubbly, chatty, and outgoing can become withdrawn and quiet.
It’s important to remember that teenagers often experience this as a result of simply growing up. It can be a stage, and becoming withdrawn isn’t necessarily a sign of addiction. Combined with some of these other symptoms, however, it could be.
Changes to Social Circles
It’s rare that teens use drugs completely on their own and don’t tell their peers about it. Most of the time, teens who abuse drugs do so with their friends. If a teen stops spending time with one group of friends and begins seeing new friends, it could be indicative of other changes in life.
For instance, a teen who thrives on the football team might start spending his weekends with new, non-football friends. He may do so because he is using drugs, and he wants to be around peers who are using.
Rapid Decline in Performance
Teen drug addiction can quickly lead to a decline in performance. Teens simply can’t perform at their best if they’re consistently impaired. If a teenager starts to do poorly in school or extracurricular activities, then try to understand why. While drug addiction isn’t the only possible explanation, it could be the cause of declining performance across the board.
Teen drug addiction can also be identified through financial changes. This is an issue that rarely gets discussed because most teens don’t have much in the way of income. However, it can still be a way to identify a drug problem.
If a teenager is asking for more money or working more hours, find out why. If they have no savings but aren’t buying materials things, then their cash could be funding their drug habit.
What to Do if You Spot These Signs of Teen Drug Addiction
If you spot all or most of these signs, then treatment is a necessity. At Ashley Addiction Treatment, drug addiction help is readily available. Teen and young adult clients will have access to comprehensive care and a range of addiction treatment methods, including:
Teen drug addiction is a serious issue, but help is available. At Ashley Addiction Treatment in Havre de Grace, Maryland, you can find your path to recovery. Call 866-313-6307 to begin working toward a lifetime of sobriety.