Saturday, October 10, 2009

Sue Scheff: Inhalant Abuse - Talk to your teens

Inhalant abuse is a substance use that many parents are not aware of, or simply don't understand how easy this is for teen and tweens to take advantage of. Teen drug use is a major concern for all parents, however they need to think about simple household products that your teens can use to get high.

Here are some great talking tips with your teen. Remember, an educated parent is a prepared parent which leads to a safer teen.


• Ask your pre-teen or teenager if he or she knows about Inhalant Abuse or
is aware of other kids abusing products.

• Reinforce peer resistance skills. Tell him or her that sniffing products to get
high is not the way to fit in. Inhalants are harmful: the “high” comes with
high cost.

• Encourage your child to come to you if he or she has any questions about

• Tell your child that the consequences of Inhalant Abuse are as dangerous as
those from abusing alcohol or using illegal drugs. Be absolutely clear
— emphasize that unsafe actions and risky behavior have serious consequences.

• Monitor your teen’s activities — set boundaries, ask questions. Be firm,
know his or her friends and his or her friends’ parents, know where they
meet to “hang out.”

• Educate your child about the dangers, but don’t mention specific
substances unless your child brings them up. While many youngsters know
kids are sniffing some substances, they may not know the full range of
products that can be abused; and you don’t want to give them suggestions.

• Tell your children that you love them and that their safety is your number
one priority. Tell them again…and again…and again.