If you think that your teenager is struggling with alcohol abuse or alcoholism, there are several signs and symptoms to look for. Signs might include (but are not limited to):
- The smell of alcohol on your teenager’s breath on a regular basis
As previously stated, smelling alcohol on your teenager’s breath once or twice isn’t necessarily cause for alarm. But smelling it on his or her breath regularly and at strange times of the day is a good indication of alcohol abuse.
Bloodshot eyes are a good physical indication of alcohol abuse.
- Changes in sleep patterns
Teenagers who are abusing alcohol will experience changed sleep patterns. They may sleep in much later than normal and go to bed significantly later (possibly because they are staying out late with friends and attempting to sneak into the house early in the morning).
- Time spent with different friends or doing different activities
Old friends and old activities are discarded for new ones – ones that revolve around drinking.
- Rapidly deteriorating personal hygiene
Another good physical indication of alcohol abuse is a change in personal hygiene. Fewer showers, less attention paid to overall appearance, unwashed hair, etc.
- A decline in school grades
Grades that sharply decline in a short amount of time are a good indication of an alcohol use disorder.