PediatricYour kids’ doctor’s recommendations on avoiding bad habits

Keeping teenagers away from alcohol, drugs and cigarettes is part of the business of a kids’ doctor. The best thing you can do is to set a good example in your own life. It’s useless to tell your children that something is “only for grownups.” That will just encourage them to try it in the hope that it will help them grow up faster. Talk openly about the dangers of alcohol, tobacco and drugs. Spell out exactly what punishment you will exact if you catch him or her doing any of these. (It needs to be believable and something you will carry out.)

One of the biggest things that draws kids to alcohol or drugs is simple boredom. Children who have nothing to do and no goals that interest them start looking for something to fill the void. Encouraging your children in reading, sports, hobbies or whatever interests them will give them a safer way to have fun.

Alcohol and drugs

We’re just going to assume you aren’t already using illegal drugs. In the case of alcohol, being a good role model is a complicated business in this case. If you drink in moderation, never having more than one beer or glass of wine with dinner, the good news is that your children have seen this. The bad news is that they may think they’re ready to do so themselves.

Since it’s likely that at some point, such as when they go away to college, your children will start drinking, you should teach them about alcohol content by volume. A lot of kids hurt themselves by trying to drink hard liquor as if it were beer.

Tobacco

If you smoke, you should definitely consider quitting. Nicotine is the most insidious danger. As addictive as any drug, its effects are less pronounced, and therefore less scary. Its worst health effects don’t usually set in until later in life. If your son or daughter has any interest in athletics, you should make clear that according to kids’ doctors, smoking will damage his or her breathing in ways that reduce his or her stamina long before it does the rest of its damage.

The good news is that tobacco has a very distinctive smell that clings to articles of clothing. If your son or daughter has been smoking or hanging out with smokers, you’ll know, especially if you don’t smoke yourself.

A kids’ doctor in Gastonia, NC

Gastonia Pediatric Associates is a kids’ doctor conveniently located west of Charlotte.It is one of the first medical practices for children in the Gastonia area, has served three generations of families with personalized care and offers medical advice for parents 24 hours a day. Its staff includes three physicians and three nursing staff. Gastonia Pediatrics is owned and directed by its own physicians. If your family needs a kids’ doctor, call today.