Signs of Substance Abuse in Teenagers


Knowing the signs and symptoms helps you and your parents understand when or if you should seek professional assistance and find a treatment program. Read on and learn more about the most common signs of teen substance abuse.

Some behavioral signs of substance abuse include avoiding eye contact, acting irresponsibly, and locking bedroom doors. They may also steal, frequently ask for money, and ignore their curfew. You may notice them making fishy calls, lying, or making excuses. Some teenagers may show a decline in school performance, such as slipping grades, missing school, and even completely withdrawing from classroom participation. They may abandon their long-time friends and lose pleasure in their hobbies and other activities.

Other physical indicators of substance abuse include a change in their appearance. They might show poor hygiene, have bloodshot or glazed eyes, and have nosebleeds or frequent runny noses. You may notice them fidgeting often, have anxiety, and become irritable and paranoid. They usually show changes in their attitude or mood and have difficulty staying focused. They might be extremely hyperactive or tired and rapidly gain or lose weight. They may complain about headaches and mouth sores frequently and have shaking hands, a swollen face, and large or smaller pupils than usual.

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We are a Medicaid provider of mental health and substance abuse services. We also provide counseling services for individuals, groups, and families. Allow us to help you get started on your journey toward recovery.

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