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Drug and alcohol use among teens
An overview for parents:
A national survey found that more than 70% of teens aged 12-17 do NOT drink alcohol
Misuse of drugs and alcohol happens when a pattern of harmful use develops over time
Misuse leads to impaired judgement and cognitive decline
Misuse can also lead to physical, psychological and sexual problems
Drug use can lead to arrests and legal proceedings
Misuse can result in behaviours that get in the way of relationships, work and study
Types of substances that can be misused
What can you do to manage the risks?
Let your child know you care, listen to their concerns and try to remain approachable.
Accept that teens take risks in order to learn
Find opportunities to discuss the issue in a low-key way
Calm conversations will always be more productive
Avoid the temptation to exaggerate the dangers - be realistic
Be aware of the laws in your State and Territory
Be a role model for responsible use of alcohol and drugs
Support your child to make their own decision by thinking through the consequences
Reassure them that you'll help them if they’ve ever taken something and are not safe
Keep alcohol and medications out of the reach of younger children
Set clear expectations and consequences for your child about drug or alcohol use
In emergencies call Poisons Information 13 11 26 or an ambulance 000 if needed
If your child is struggling, help them seek professional support
As a parent, you are not alone – contact Parentline in your State or Territory
You're not alone in wanting to protect your child from alcohol and drug misuse
There’s support available for parents if you’re looking for information and guidance. Try calling Parentline in your State or Territory for assistance.
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