It is extremely important that we educate our youth about the harm caused by drug use. We should also talk with them about how an addiction can lead to a lifetime of problems. The good news is that if you know any children who are currently using alcohol or drugs, there are treatment programs which can help them to stop the addiction in its tracks. You can start by reaching out to us here at Harmony Recovery NC. For now, let’s talk a bit more about how we can educate these children during National Substance Abuse Prevention Month.
Bringing Education into the Schools
Luckily, there are many school-based programs that help kids to learn about the dangers of drug and alcohol use. D.A.R.E. and other programs are used to offer children the information they need for this purpose. While parents usually need to sign a permission slip in order for their kids to attend these programs, they are truly beneficial. Some of the education kids can learn from school-based drug and alcohol use prevention programs include:
- Dangers of drugs and alcohol
- How addiction affects the person’s life
- How addiction impacts the lives of those around the addict
- Ways drug and alcohol abuse can affect physical and mental health
- How drug and alcohol use affects emotional management
- What self-medication means and what to do about it
These are just some of the things that children can learn in these programs. These platforms also offer children a way to reach out for help if they are currently abusing alcohol and/or drugs. There are professionals, teachers and others who students and kids can talk to when they are struggling or if they just have any questions.
Talking to Your Kids During National Substance Abuse Prevention Month
October is National Substance Abuse Prevention Month. This is a great month for parents to discuss substance use prevention with their children. It may seem like this is a subject that shouldn’t be discussed with kids until they are way older. However, unfortunately, these days there are very young children who are getting their hands on alcohol and drugs. So, this subject does need to be discussed early on.
If you aren’t sure how to talk to your kids about drug and alcohol use prevention, don’t worry. You aren’t alone. Many parents have a difficult time finding the right words to use. They aren’t even sure where to begin or how to bring up the topic of substance use prevention. Here at Harmony Recovery NC, we have some tips that can help you to have these types of conversations with your children. Some of these tips include:
- Start small – if you aren’t sure where to start when talking to your kids about this topic, just start with something little such as asking if they have any friends who they are concerned about (this takes the focus off from them and they may be more willing to open up to you)
- Ask open-ended questions – when you ask these types of questions your kids need to respond in more words, so they may give your more information this way than if you ask simple yes or no questions
- Share your own stories – by letting your kids know that you are human, they may be more willing to let you know if they are using alcohol and/or drugs or ask for help if they need it
- Don’t judge – this tip is extremely important because kids aren’t likely to open up to adults if they feel they will be judged
If you can use these tips with your kids, you may find out information about them that you didn’t previously know. In addition, your kids may open up to you about what they think of drug and alcohol use. If they are already in an addictive lifestyle, they may open up to you and ask for the help they need. At the very least, they will know you are there for them, when they are ready to ask for help or if they ever get into a situation they don’t want to be in.
Why Focus on Prevention in National Substance Abuse Prevention Month
Prevention is important because it helps stop substance abuse before it happens. There are far too many minors who are starting to use alcohol and drugs to cope with emotions, school and other difficulties in their life. Some are doing it because of peer pressure, as well.
The sooner we can help our kids to see that alcohol and drug use is dangerous and will negatively affect their life, the better it will be for them. What better time than National Substance Abuse Prevention Month to do this. In addition, prevention helps with the following:
- Saving money
- Children make better choices for their life now and in the future
- Creating better relationships
- Have more time to do healthier, fun activities
- Keeping a healthy lifestyle
Now that you know it is best to prevent an addiction before it starts, you can figure out when and what you are going to say to your children during National Substance Abuse Prevention Month. If you have concerns about your children already using alcohol and/or drugs, please reach out to us here at Harmony Recovery NC. Our team will gladly offer you guidance on what you can do to help your child get sober and overcome their addiction earlier on in life, so it doesn’t continue to negatively impact their lifestyle, health or other aspects of their life.
Prevent Addiction and Protect Our Children
During National Substance Abuse Prevention Month, we want to prevent substance abuse and addiction for our children. By doing this, we are able to protect our children from a life of troubles, damage, health issues, legal issues and other problems.
If your child already has an addiction or substance use disorder, don’t hesitate to get them the help they need. There are so many recovery resources and services that can be used to help them overcome the addiction. Contact us today during National Substance Abuse Prevention Month to get your child the help they need.