|It is very important to begin communicating with your child to help prevent them from picking up bad habits, including the use of tobacco, alcohol and drugs (including the use of inhalants; especially aerosols and glue). Children whose parents talk to them regularly are at much less risk for experimenting with cigarettes, alcohol and drugs. Teach them how to avoid situations where drugs, alcohol, or cigarettes are present and to choose friends who also choose not to use these substances.
Emphasize to them that these substances can hurt them, can make them sick, can cause decrease lung function and problems playing sports, and that it is OK to say no. Also, do not let them attend parties that are unsupervised by adults and let your child know that they can communicate openly with you about these difficult subjects. Watch for the warning signs of drug use, including a sudden change in your child's behavior or personality, decreased performance in school, or changes in what friends they associate with.
Most importantly, set a good example by not smoking or using drugs yourselves.