As children become teenagers, the threats they face change. Once your teen is in high school they will have greater independence and you will not always be present to guide them. That is why it is crucial to educate teens about how to identify potential risks and stay safe. Covering these essential topics will empower your teen and enable them to recognize and avoid potential threats.
1. Awareness of Surroundings
An individual’s personal information can be accessed via a free person lookup site. GoLookUp is a great tool that enables you to run background checks and review court records and arrest records. As teens age, they will come in contact with more adults. Teach them to be cautious and run a background check to determine if a person has a criminal record. Demonstrate how this can help them identify sex offenders or others who may pose a threat to their safety. Teaching your teen that it is okay to ask questions and to use tools to investigate new associates is a way to ensure that they do not put themselves in vulnerable situations with people they do not know well.
2. Temptations of Drugs and Alcohol
Despite the fact that the legal drinking age in the United States is 21, the majority of teenagers have had the opportunity to access alcohol and studies show that almost 60% of teens in the United States will have consumed alcohol by the time they are 18. High school students are also likely to binge drink. Binge drinking can cause health issues, such as alcohol poisoning, high blood pressure, and liver inflammation. Although teens are more likely to use alcohol than marijuana, teens consume both pharmaceutical and non-pharmaceutical drugs. Teenagers are also vaping in greater numbers than ever before. Discuss the risks of consuming alcohol and drugs. Teaching your teens to identify warning signs of substance abuse can also help them identify peers who may have an issue with drugs or alcohol.
3. Cognizance of Bullying
Bullying is not limited to physical assault or name-calling. It can include excluding a person, destroying their property or gossiping about them. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) identified a link between bullying and youth suicide rates and prepared materials for use by public and Catholic high school academics. Parents can help by discussing what bullying is and the potential impact of bullying on a person’s mental and physical well-being. Teach your child from a young age that bullying is unacceptable and should be reported so that you will be able to intervene if they are the victim of bullying. Take action when they are bullied to ensure they feel confident coming to you with any future issues. Knowing they have a parent who will help them can keep them from feeling hopeless when bullied.
4. Rules Regarding Sex and Sexting
More than half of all teenagers are sexually active by the age of 18. Despite health classes about sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and the risk of pregnancy, not all teens use contraceptives. Protect your teen’s health by educating them about the risks of sexual activity. You can opt to provide contraceptives to protect them from STDs and unwanted pregnancy.
It is also important to talk to teens about sexting. Sexting is the act of taking and sending sexually explicit images, videos or messages to others via text message. Over 27% of those between the ages of 12 and 17 have received sexts and these numbers are on the rise. Discuss the risks of sexting and cyberbullying to ensure your teen knows the risks involved with sexting and how that can impact their life if their images are shared.
5. Dangers of Cybercrime
Once your teen knows how to use GoLookUp to research new associates, discuss how search engines can be used by others to locate personal information about them. With their phone number and basic details, someone else may be able to access public records, identify their family members and learn their current address. Sharing personal data on sites like LinkedIn can enable strangers or associates to locate this data.
Teach your teen to use their computer responsibly and be careful about sharing personal details with others they play games with or interact with via their social network online. Teens may be approached by predators online. Discussing the risks can help your teen understand how important it is to protect their personal information and be cautious when encountering new people online.
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