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What to do if your teen is caught with drugs

If you receive the news that your teenage child is using illegal drugs, you are probably feeling a flurry of emotions. It is normal to feel anger, confusion and even shame when your kid has a drug abuse problem. This can be a scary time in your life, but it is possible to get a positive outcome.

Figuring out the next steps to take can be hard. Here are some tips for handling the consequences that may result when your child gets in trouble for doing drugs at school.

Get professional assistance

If the school catches your teen with an illicit substance on campus, law enforcement will almost certainly get involved. A juvenile delinquency or criminal case can have detrimental effects on the life of your teen. Seeking legal advice will help you to protect the rights of your child and to get the best outcome possible. 

Ask for disciplinary decisions in writing

The school may expel or suspend your child from attending school. This may be a temporary or permanent decision. Make sure to obtain a copy of any disciplinary measures so you understand all the details. You should also inquire about your options, such as transferring your teen to another school or appealing the disciplinary action. 

Consider treatment

If it turns out your child is definitely struggling with illegal substances, you should look into treatment. Your child may benefit from substance abuse treatment. Seeing a specialized physician, meeting with an addiction psychiatrist or attending a support group may help your teen get back on the right track. Medication may also help. Oftentimes, a combination of therapy and medication is best to help your child recover.

It can be intimidating to think about the fact that your child may have a criminal record and addiction problem. But if you seek support from professionals, you and your family can make it through this hard time. 

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