I caught my kid using Cannabis, now what?

As a parent, finding out that your teen is smoking Cannabis (or using it in any of the other many forms in which it can be consumed) can be a shock. It's important to handle the situation with care and understanding as opposed to being angry or reactionary.

Here are some helpful steps you can take:

1. Stay calm: It's natural to feel upset or angry when you find out your teen is using cannabis, but try to stay calm and avoid reacting in a way that could make the situation worse. Remember, the goal is to have your child see you as a support network and resource when they need help - - not a point of punishment or fear.
2. Have an open conversation: Let your child know that you know by using "I" statements ("I noticed that...." or "I found this...."). Talk to your child about why they are using Cannabis and listen to their perspective ("I want to support you and understand what's goin on in your world. Can you give me a snapshot of what's going on for you?"). It's important to understand the reasons behind their use and to have an open dialogue about the risks and potential consequences.
3. Set clear boundaries: Make it clear that you do not condone drug use and set clear consequences if the behavior continues. At the same time, make sure to express your love and support for your child. Be sure to describe the real legal, neurological, physical, and mental consequences that can come with use.
4. Seek professional help: If you are concerned about your teen's Cannabis-use, seek professional help. This could include a counselor, therapist, or addiction specialist. This could also include education-specific resources.

5. Educate yourself and your child: One of the best ways to prevent Cannabis-use among teens is through education. The YESS Academy offers an interactive Cannabis education course for teens that can help them understand the risks and consequences of Cannabis-use. By educating yourself and your child, you can help prevent future drug use and keep your child safe. 

How dangerous is Cannabis?

Cannabis is a psychoactive drug that can have a range of effects on the mind and body, and prolonged use can lead to addiction and a range of health problems. One of the biggest dangers of Cannabis-use among teens is the effect it can have on brain development. The adolescent brain is still developing, and exposure to cannabis can impact memory, attention, and other cognitive functions. Studies have also found that regular cannabis use during adolescence can increase the risk of developing mental health disorders, such as depression and anxiety. 
In addition to the long-term risks, there are also short-term dangers associated with cannabis use. Cannabis can impair judgment and coordination, which can lead to accidents or injuries. It can also cause an increase in heart rate, which can be dangerous for individuals with underlying heart conditions. 

YESS Academy Cannabis Education Course

The YESS Academy offers an interactive Cannabis education course that can help teens understand the risks and consequences of Cannabis-use. The course covers a range of important topics, including the health risks associated with Cannabis-use, how to recognize signs of drug ab/use, and strategies for making healthy choices. 

In conclusion

Discovering that your child is using Cannabis can be a stressful and challenging experience. However, by calmly approaching the situation with empathy and understanding, setting clear boundaries, seeking professional help if needed, and educating yourself and your child about the risks and consequences of drug use, you can help prevent future drug use and keep your child safe.

The YESS Academy is here to support you in this process, and we encourage you to explore our Cannabis Awareness and Education e-Learning Curriculum as a valuable tool for promoting drug awareness among teens. 
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1. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Service Administration: https://www.samhsa.gov/marijuana
2. Colorado Substance Abuse Trend and Response Task Force. Annual Report. 2021. https://coag.gov/app/uploads/2020/12/2021-Annual-Report-Substance-Abuse-Trend-Response-Task-Force.pdf
3. Center for disease control and Preventtion: https://www.cdc.gov/marijuana/health-effects/brain-health.htm