Addiction can happen at any age, but it usually starts when a person is young. If your teen continues to use drugs despite harmful consequences, he or she may be addicted.
If an adolescent starts behaving differently for no apparent reason — such as acting withdrawn, frequently tired or depressed, or hostile — it could be a sign he or she is developing a drug-related problem. Parents and others may overlook such signs, believing them to be a normal part of puberty. Other signs include:
- a change in peer group
- carelessness with grooming
- decline in academic performance
- missing classes or skipping school
- loss of interest in favorite activities
- trouble in school or with the law
- changes in eating or sleeping habits
- deteriorating relationships with family members and friends
Through scientific advances, we know more than ever before about how drugs work in the brain. We also know that addiction can be successfully treated to help young people stop abusing drugs and lead productive lives. Intervening early when you first spot signs of drug use in your teen is critical; don’t wait for your teen to become addicted before you seek help. However, if a teen is addicted, treatment is the next step.
Please contact Behavioral Health Services at (907) 443-3344 for consultation and appointment.
From National Institute on Drug Abuse, Advancing Addiction Science website at www.drugabuse.gov