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If your child is using drugs, do you know what to look for?

On Behalf of | Oct 4, 2021 | Child Custody

Divorce is generally difficult for adults to cope with. It can be even more challenging for children. They don’t often see the demise of their parents’ relationship coming and feel like they have little control. 

Some studies show that the period immediately before and after a parents’ divorce is when kids are often at risk of abusing drugs and alcohol. If you are facing a divorce, are your kids having a hard time coping? If can be hard to tell. Here are some signs you should look for.

Signs your teen may be taking drugs

Researchers at Stanford Children’s Health have created a list of different concerns you may want to be on the lookout for. These signs may indicate that your child is dealing with substance abuse issues. They include: 

  • Vulnerabilities to peer pressure: Your teen is smart, yet you find that they keep doing silly things that they know not to do. This might be a sign that they’re likely to give in to peer pressure, including experimenting with alcohol or drugs.
  • Behavioral shifts: Your child may seem unfocused or emotionally detached if they’re using drugs or are intoxicated. You may also find that your child begins lying or starts acting very secretive as their experimentation or abuse of substances increases.
  • Sensory indicators: You may notice that your child’s eyes have become dilated or that your child isn’t maintaining proper hygiene (such as having bad breath) when they’re engaging in substance abuse.

You may notice these signs before finding drugs or related paraphernalia in your child’s possession. You may also have a gut feeling as a parent that something’s wrong even before such a discovery.

Parents often have different types of parenting styles. A child that receives less supervision or support in coping with the change in family dynamics may be more inclined to engage in substance abuse to numb their pain. If your current custody arrangement seems to be having a negative effect on your child, a custody modification may be necessary to give your child the support they need to get through this trying time in their life.