Triangle Cross Ranch understands that you want to find help for your teen boy involved with risky activities that can cause permanent damage to his health and future. Here are some important things to know about the consequences of risky behavior.
It has become very common to see young people experimenting, for the first time, with marijuana at ages 12 to 14. Tobacco use may begin as early as age 11 and is very common in most high schools. While many may be able to experiment with the drug of their choice and stop as they choose, others may develop a dependency, or move on to become a habitual user of more serious drugs, resulting in serious health problems.
Most teens using drugs may feel indestructible or in denial of any consequences that may come from using. They may have an attitude that they can quit at any time, and it is their life. They are, typically, oblivious to the negative health effects of tobacco, alcohol, or marijuana and may defend their use as “normal teenage behaviors.” As a parent, you can look for signs of alcohol or drug use and may be in the dark for some time. Parents often are the last ones to know what their child is into, even though they stay in touch with their child and their school. Kids are very good at masking their issues and fooling their parents.
Teens at risk for developing serious alcohol and drug problems include those having:
- A genetic predisposition or family history of risky activities
- Low self-esteem
- Few friends or social life/Lonely
The most commonly used substances in high school are marijuana and alcohol. However, OTCs (over-the-counter meds), such as cold medication, cough syrup, sleep aides, diet pills, inhalants, glue or certain solvents, have become more popular over the past decade because of availability and cost. These are being abused by middle school and high school students alike with negative consequences. The use of illegal drugs, such as marijuana, stimulants, cocaine, crack, LSD, PCP, and ecstasy are increasing among young teens all over the US. There are no economic boundaries on drug usage, and it is becoming more acceptable in social circles nationwide.
The negative consequences of drug use would include an addiction to more serious drugs, failing grades, disengagement from family, making poor choices that may result in accidents or violence, sexual activity, or even suicide.
Serious health issues may also be a result of drug or alcohol consumption. Warning signs for parents may include:
- Withdrawing from the family/arguing or breaking family rules
- Skipping school/poor academic success
- Red and glazed eyes, repeat cough, fatigue
- Mood swings from depression, anger, irritability
- Change of interests including peer group
- Stealing from family members or others
As parents notice significant changes in their teen, they need to have a comprehensive evaluation done to rule out other possible related disorders , as well as the risky activities. Early detection and treatment may certainly result in more favorable outcomes for your child. As a parent, do not be afraid to confront your teen if you suspect that he is becoming involved in the use of a harmful substance. Remember that your child is in danger of further harm, and most likely, will not come to you for help. So where can you find help for your teen now?
A Rugged, Caring Therapeutic Program for At-Risk Teen Boys
At Triangle Cross Ranch, we focus on providing quality outdoor experiences, allowing at-risk boys gain a new perspective on life and personal responsibility. Our remote, 50,000-acre working cattle ranch and farm sits near Yellowstone National Park in scenic NW Wyoming–a great place to learn important life lessons that set him on a new path with meaning and purpose. Plus, our experienced, caring and committed staff provides strong academic support, as well as trade school education on-site.
Triangle Cross Ranch also uses “Reality Therapy” to help your at-risk teen boy heal his mind, body and soul. Troubled boys receive the individualized care and attention that they need to face issues, i.e. risky activities, along with life-changing experiences and hands-on learning opportunities. Call us today at (307) 645-3322 and see if your son would be a good fit in our real life ranch therapeutic program. We’re here to help!