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Teenage Drug Misuse

Many young people become involved in drugs for a wide variety of reasons. It might be due to social pressures, a way of coping with problems, thoughts or processes.


Drug misuse is known to directly kill thousands of people each year, many of them young.


Drug Misuse

It can be a frightening time as your loved one will in an altered state and from your life experiences as an adult you will recognise the lack of self-care and an inability from them to see how vulnerable they are.

Why Do Some Young People Misuse Drugs?

Drugs are frighteningly accessible, even to teenagers, so many parents report issues with substance misuse with their children.


Drug misuse can start as a social activity when out with friends, a way to show off, to feel included or escape the world for a while. However, when relief from reality is gained so instantly and gratifyingly our children, with less impulse control, can become very reliant on instant gratification as a form of relief from overwhelmed feelings.

Most Common Types of Drug


The most familiar drugs to be used by teenagers include:

  • Cannabis or Hash

  • Synthetic Marijuana (spice, clockwork orange, pandora’s box)

  • Ketamine

  • Aerosols

  • Amphetamines

  • Ecstasy

  • Speed

  • Cocaine

  • Heroin

  • Mushrooms

These are drug types that can be smoked, swallowed, inhaled, or injected.


Teenagers can also access prescription drugs that are for them or others in the home. Drugs such as:

  • Benzodiazepines (Diazapam, Tamazapan etc)

  • OxyContin and Percocet

  • Vicodin

  • Xanax

  • Fentanyl

  • Codeine

  • Co-codamol

  • Tramadol


These can be highly addictive, and some are incredibly risky to withdrawal from.​


Symptoms of Drug Misuse


Drug misuse can affect social lives and relationships in a negative manner. Drug users can become irritable, secretive and dishonest in order to hide their behaviour from others, and it will have a negative impact on their school or college work as they lose focus and concentration. Drugs come at a high financial cost and young adults without their own means can lead to financial difficulties, debts, facing a physical threat which can lead to theft and other criminal behaviour.


If you suspect that someone in your home is abusing drugs, you may notice certain paraphernalia appearing amongst their belongings. This could range from pipes and rolling papers to grinders, rolled banknotes and receipts and empty aerosol bottles and possibly even needles. 


Teenage drug misuse takes many different forms and often parents are best placed to recognise a change in their child. This might take the form of a difference in personality or judgement as well as mood swings, depression or anxiety. They may have lost interest in hobbies they were previously enthusiastic about and are possibly spending time with new friends.


The individual may have recognised that they need help, or it may be you that has seen they are no longer in control of their own behaviour. You should approach this gently and help them to see that they are in a safe space where they can be honest with you. Admitting that they have a problem with drugs is the first step to recovery, so try and make it as easy as possible for them to do this.

How can Archangel Help?

Getting help for drug misuse isn’t easy as it can be hard for someone misusing to admit to this type of problem. Our residential treatment helps to remove them from a drug-related environment in order to give them the opportunity to reflect on their behaviour with the help and support of open-minded, non-judgmental counsellors.

Tailored Treatment

By offering a residential therapy setting, we can offer 24-hour support and supervision to ensure your teenager is safe and cared for at all times.


We do not offer detox services nor will be able to admit a young person who is presenting as physically or psychologically addicted. We also wont be able to help if we feel like a potential resident will experience any withdrawal symptoms whilst in our care. We believe that most young people don't fall into this category and their use is related to underlying issues of self-worth and the ability to self-esteem. It is this fundamental issue that we will employ our team to tackle, by combining therapy with activities such as yoga and exercise, which will help teenagers learn how to love and care for themselves.

Family Support

Our family support programme allows everyone involved to express what they have been through and the impact it has had. This allows everyone to rebuild strong and healthy foundations and creates an effective support network for the patient when they return home.

How it Works

Seeing someone misuse can be a shameful experience for loved ones and family. There is absolutely no shame in this, and our understanding and experienced team will be here to support you.


Initial Assessment

We will assess your situation and create a bespoke plan that will help your loved one uncover, understand and tackle the underlying issues that lead to drug misuse and get them to a point where they are ready to return back to their normal life, away from drugs.


We do this through direct and indirect therapy, where our patients can speak openly and honestly about their feelings and experiences. We will also involve the whole family throughout the process to help you all understand how each other feels and how to move forwards.

Ongoing Support

Our support does not end when you leave the house, as we will always be on the end of the phone if you need us. Whether you encounter a new obstacle in life, go through a relapse or are unsure how to deal with a new situation, we will be there to help and guide you as much as you require.