Many teenagers are subjected to a variety of societal pressures and try tobacco, alcohol, and drugs to overcome stress and fit in with their peers. Few of them have control over these habits while the rest get addicted and have cravings. Alcohol can damage the liver; drug abuse can dangerously harm the addicted person. Drinking and drug abuse have become prevalent in the adult population, so it is sensible to focus on preventing these trends in the younger generations. Few strategies that can protect the youth from getting into these bad habits are detailed in this blog.
Prevention should start with parents
As a parent, you can do many things to prevent these habits and safeguard your children from the dangers of drinking and drug abuse.
Children imitate parents in most aspects. Your actions speak more than your words! So, the first thing you should do is to stop using alcohol and drugs yourself and your child follows. Keep an eye on the drugs available in your home.
Start talking openly about the negatives of alcohol, tobacco, and drug abuse to your children. Tell them how it can affect their thinking and the ability to make decisions while playing or learning new stuff. Be as supportive as you can; set examples. Try not to be judgmental nor use harsh words on your child.
Your child might be of the opinion that “everybody drinks” or “it is not really harmful to abuse drugs”. Encourage honesty of expression, listen to your child and correct such misbelieves your child has. Protect them from the media which glamorize alcohol, tobacco, or drug use. Praise them for their good behavior. But if your teen is already an addict, then medical intervention is required.
Know your child’s friends. Abuser friends can mislead your child to experiment the same. Help them make informed choices of having positive friends.
Know the activities your teen is involved in. Keep your child busy with useful activities such as sports, reading, and other programs.
Your role as a youth
Simple! Putting the good teachings from your parents into action can prevent yourself from falling into this trap of addiction.
Be attentive about the members you are hanging out with. Plan ahead and be smart! If the group has more of drinkers and drug abusers, give it a thought if you have to go along with such group. Simply say “NO” to drinks and drugs when offered by your friends or peers. Don’t ever be afraid of facing a negative reaction from your friends. After all, it is right to say no to something which is not right for you!
Connect with your parents and other elders you can rely on and who can help you in making informed decisions. Follow your family rules as taught by your parents.
There are many ways to enjoy your life. So don’t think of giving an excuse that “I am bored and need a drink.” Get active in other community activities, listen to some music, play or do some productive work.
It is tough to recover from addiction to alcohol, tobacco and drugs. Also, it can take lots of time to give up such habits. Youth should be responsible for their health and lives. They are the role models to the future generations. So, it’s wise to keep a tab on preventing them from getting into these negatives.