Loose summer schedules mean kids will have less contact with parents and other adults who would notice signs and symptoms of drug use during the school year.
“It’s common for substance abuse to go unnoticed in the summer months,” said Mary Roufa, manager of community services and support for Rosecrance. “Schedules get turned around. Parents are at work while teens are sleeping in. Kids stay out late with friends, coming home late when parents are asleep. People are missing each other.”
In the spirit of summer, Rosecrance offers these tips for parents:
- Establish a schedule for teens. It may include chores, a job, volunteer work, summer school, park district programs or other healthy activities.
- Set boundaries and establish a curfew.
- Insist on daily face time, even if that means staying up late until your children come home. Then talk with them.
- Make expectations clear and assign responsibilities, then follow through with positive and negative consequences.
- Know the signs and symptoms of substance abuse, including mood swings, changes in sleep patterns, loss of appetite, changes in friends, secret phone calls and shortages of money.
- Seek help at the first sign of a problem, before substance abuse worsens.
For more information about adolescent substance abuse treatment at Rosecrance, or to get help, call 888.928.5278 or go to our contact page.