Most parents have concerns over their children’s Internet use from time to time. These concerns can vary from worries over the amount of time their kids spend browsing the Web to cyberbullying, online predators, and more. Few parents, however, worry themselves over their children’s exposure to drugs online. After all, a computer can’t dispense narcotics, right? Well, not exactly, but that doesn’t mean the Internet is an entirely drug-free place either. According to the Treatment Research Institute at Drugfree.org, there are hundreds of YouTube videos, websites, and chat rooms that not only glorify the use of drugs, but also instruct kids in locating and even making illicit substances.
### Talking About Drugs
The truth is that all of the negative influences that exist in the real word are alive and well on the Internet as well. Perhaps even more so. The anonymity that the screen provides tends to make kids (and adults alike) less inhibited, which can be a recipe for trouble. For instance, kids may engage in drug-related talk online on a social media network, whereas they wouldn’t dream of breaching such a subject at school, or even at a friend’s house. This is just one of the many reasons that monitoring your child’s online chat is a good idea.
### Your Kids Can Buy Drugs Online
Even more disturbing is the fact that kids can actually buy drugs online as well. While it’s more difficult to find a website that sells “traditional” drugs like marijuana or cocaine, many illegal online pharmacies are happy to sell prescription drugs (minus the prescription) like Oxycontin, which is arguably just as addictive and harmful. Plus, according to the president of the International Narcotics Control Board, these nefarious online drug stores are becoming more brazen these days, using social media networks to market their sites to anyone with an interest.
### Exposure to Drug Making Info
As you know, there is a wealth of information available online about virtually any subject you can think of. Unfortunately, drugs are no exception. According to EverydayHealth.com, teenagers are increasingly using the Web to find out how to get high, either by ingesting common household substances or mixing them with other ingredients to create an intoxicating, and sometimes lethal, concoction.
### What Parents Can Do
Qustodio Internet FilterIn lieu of banning the Internet altogether, there are some things you can do to ensure that your child doesn’t receive an extra dose of drug exposure from the Web. Some internet filters, such as Qustodio, will allow you to ban some categories of websites while allowing others. For instance, once you install Qustodio on your computer, you’ll have the option of blocking any website featuring drug-related information. You’ll also be able to see who your child is talking to online and even monitor his conversations to make sure that there is no drug talk going on behind closed doors. If you’re ready to make the Web a drug-free place for your child, download our free parental control software today. It really is that easy!