Signs Your Teenager Might be Using Drugs

What do you do if you notice a rapid change in your teen’s behavior and appearance? Their friends are coming around the house acting stand-off-ish and it seems like they all have a secret. As parents, it’s important to know the signs to look for when it comes to teenage drug use.

Symptoms of Teenage Drug Use

Just as the effects of alcohol vary from person to person, it is important to understand that each teenager under the influence will display behaviors unique to them. Some teens may display all of the signs while others only show one or two. There are many signs that your teen may be using, but it’s also important that parents trust their instincts, ask questions, and seek help if they see their teen exhibiting any of these signs:

Signs of: Depressant Use

Depressants are a wide category of narcotics that could include alcohol and prescription drugs. Common depressants include barbiturates and tranquilizers. Some signs that your teen may be using depressants include:

  • Disorientation
  • Drowsiness
  • Slow reaction times
  • Slurred speech
  • Lack of coordination

Signs of: Stimulant Use

Often referred to as “uppers,” stimulants can also come in the form of prescription medication. Cocaine and meth are other stimulants. Signs of stimulant use include:

  • Anxiety
  • Body tremors
  • Excitability
  • Teeth grinding
  • Insomnia
  • Irritability
  • Redness around the nose

Signs of: Hallucinogens

LSD and other hallucinogens can cause teens to experience long, intense “trips” when using these drugs. Hallucinogen use is often noticeable by:

  • A meditative, dreamy state
  • Body tremors
  • Dazed appearance
  • Disorientation
  • Nausea
  • Paranoia
  • Poor time and distance perception

Signs of: Dissociative Anesthetics

PCP is just one dissociative anesthetic, but it’s fairly well known. These drugs can be smoked, taken orally, injected, and used as eye drops. Some signs your teen may be using dissociative anesthetics include:

  • Black stares
  • Difficulty speaking
  • Chemical-like odor
  • Violent behavior
  • An increased pain threshold
  • Slow or slurred speech

Signs of: Narcotic Analgesics

Opioids like heroin and methadone are included in some prescription drugs. These narcotics, when abused, create a euphoric state of mind. Some teens who have been abusing opioids for a long while may not show any impairment. However, early signs of opioid use include:

  • Drowsiness
  • Euphoria
  • Facial itching
  • Constricted pupils
  • Slow, raspy speech
  • Dry mouth
  • Puncture wounds in arms, legs, between the toes

Signs of: Inhalants

Inhalants, including gasses, are so dangerous that an overdose can cause a coma. It’s important to note that anesthetic gasses cause low blood pressure while aerosols and volatile solvents, like glue, cause high blood pressure. Inhalant use is often noticeable by:

  • Bloodshot, watery eyes
  • Disorientation
  • Lack of communication
  • Intense headaches
  • Lack of muscle control
  • Substance residue
  • Slow, slurred speech

Signs of: Marijuana (Cannabis)

Marijuana is one of the most common cannabis products for teens to use, but synthetic marijuana is becoming more popular. Common signs of marijuana use may not always be evident but can include:

  • A distinct odor
  • Relaxed inhibitions
  • Increased appetite
  • Disorientation
  • Impaired perception
  • Paranoia

IF YOU SUSPECT YOUR TEEN HAS BEEN EXPERIMENTING WITH DRUGS, WE PROVIDE ACCURATE AND CONFIDENTIAL DRUG TESTING. CALL (816) 800-9699 OR CONTACT TEST SMARTLY LABS TODAY. YOU CAN MAKE AN APPOINTMENT AT ANY OF OUR 5 KANSAS CITY AREA LOCATIONS.

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