Many parents worry about their children getting caught up in drugs, but when you think about drugs, you think about drugs that are bought on the street or drugs passed around at a party. You do not think about the fact there are “drugs” in your home, online, grocery stores, or listed on your basic everyday household shopping list. Studies show that people can find ways to get high through your everyday household items: prescription medications, over the counter medications, synthetic substances, and alcohol. Young people can easily and legally get in contact with these items, which make them so appealing to them, but these can cause major risks. Many young people have the misconception that abusing household items and prescription drugs are safer than using drugs from the street or parties, but this is completely false.
Using household items for drugs, prescription pills, and alcohol can result in major life-threatening emergencies or an overdose.
Misusing household items can cause:
- Academic problems
- Trouble legally
- Relationship issues
- Symptoms showing in mental health development
- Addiction problems that can last a lifetime
Someone who knows their way around technology know how to find anything they need on the internet. Some young people may prefer this method, because it is quick, can be done anonymously, and it will come right to your doorstep.
Common Abused Household Items
Alcohol is an extremely popular drug. In the United States, it is illegal to drink alcohol if you are younger than 21 years old. However, teens take advantage of the big availability of alcohol, not only in your home, but also at restaurants and in stores.
There are prescription drugs that can get you high when purposefully used incorrectly. These drugs can be prescribed by a doctor, which makes these drugs “legal”. Extra prescription pills can become a problem when they are left in medicine cabinets and people go looking to get high. Some drugs, like Ritalin and Adderall, are rumored to improve academic performance, which makes them other popular drugs, especially with college students.
They can also use household items that are filled with chemicals to get high. Some people use snorting, sniffing, or huffing inhalants, such as glue, whiteout, paint thinner, aerosol sprays, markers, and more. Almost any product held in a pressurized container has the possibility of being used as an inhalant. Abuse of these products can result in limited motor skills, decreased brain function, and slurred speech. Some common effects of using inhalants:
- Muscle spasms or weakness
- Slow reflexes
Over the counter medications, when used irresponsibly, can have dangerous effects. Cough medicine, caffeine pills, and sleep aids are medications that are often abused. They are easy to get at your local store and usually inexpensive.
Common Warning Signs
Misused household items tend to cause some similar physical effects. It is important to keep an eye out for some common side effects that show physically, like dilated pupils, flushed cheeks, and sweating. Along with physical effects, there are also some behavioral effects to look out for. Behavioral changes are very common for young people who take drugs. Teenagers, in general, are known to be moody, but drugs can cause a deeper issue in behavior. Memory issues can be caused by drug use. However, everyone forgets things no matter what age they are, but if your son or daughter is having problems remembering simple things, you may want to investigate further. Abnormal weight fluctuations could be caused by an addiction. Some people ignore their appetite because of drugs. Here are a few other common warning signs of drug abuse:
- Abnormal mood swings
- Abnormal defiance
- Changes in hygiene
- No appetite
- Weird chemical scent
To ensure that you catch any of the signs early, be sure to have an open relationship with your son or daughter. Have face to face conversations with your son or daughter. Know you child, so you will be able to spot any behavioral changes quickly and know when something is not right.
How to Help Your Son or Daughter
Many of the abused products mentioned above are sold online; this attracts many young people’s attention due to the quick and easy access. You should monitor their internet.
Many young people abuse legal drugs, because they think that just because the drug is legal and easily available means that they are safe. However, just because it is legal does not mean it is safe.
In some cases, toddlers and young children are also in danger of being exposed to the negative effects of these products. These young children do not know better and have absolutely no knowledge of these dangerous products, and can become endangered when they are left with someone who is trying to get high. It is important to make sure your household products are being stored away and that you monitor their container levels constantly.
Addressing a substance abuse issue with your child is a serious and difficult test for any parent. In the end, no matter the situation, they are still your child. It is important to remember that and respond to the situation with love and support. Also, do not blame yourself; many parents have the habit of blaming themselves in situations like this. Do not try to go through this alone. Trying to help your son or daughter on your own can be very overwhelming. You could be setting you and your child up for failure. You are not alone. There are addiction treatment centers meant to help you and your son or daughter fight through this together.
If your son or daughter is currently struggling with this addiction right now, call us today at 877-978-3148. Our counselors are available 24 hours a day. We are here to help!