Taking a Stand Against Teen Medicine Abuse
With prescription medicines now the most commonly abused drugs among 12 and 13 year olds, The Partnership at Drugree.org is highlighting the need to bring attention to this public health crisis.
Last week marked the launch of The Medicine Abuse Project, a multi-year effort aimed at preventing half a million teens from abusing medicine within the next five years. And, on its heels, The Partnership has released an infographic that summarizes the popularity and dangers of medicine abuse, along with the clear disconnect between parents and teens on the matter. According to the graphic, 1 in 6 teens has used a prescription drug to get high or alter moods, and 65 percent of teens who abuse pain relievers get them from home or friends.
The unprecedented accessibility of prescription drugs means it’s more important than ever for parents to safeguard medicines at home and administer them appropriately; however, the infographic also illustrates that parents are not often on the same page with teens when it comes to taking prescription medication: Only 3 percent of parents admit to giving their teenager a medicine not prescribed to them, but 22 percent of teens say their parents have done so.
To address these findings, The Medicine Abuse Project sponsored a series of launch-week events focused on the prevalence, dangers, and consequences of medicine abuse. Programs included a live Facebook-timeline Q&A with Dr. Drew Pinsky and Celebrity Rehab participant Amber Smith and an iVillage Twitter chat, among others.
So how can you join the effort to #endmedicineabuse among teens? Start by taking The Medicine Abuse Project’s Pledge to learn about teen medicine abuse, safeguard your medicines, and talk to the teens you know about the issue. Take action today to help save a teen’s life.
The Partnership at Drugfree.org is a drug abuse prevention, intervention, treatment and recovery resource, existing to help parents and caregivers effectively address alcohol and drug abuse with their teens and young adults.