Did you know teen medicine abuse is on the rise? There was a 33 percent increase in American teens abusing prescription drugs over a five-year period. Prescription meds now rank in the top three most popular drugs of choice among youth, just after marijuana and alcohol. Statistics reveal that ONE in FOUR teens have misused or abused prescription drugs.
Bullying touches the lives of at least one out of every four children in the U.S. In this year alone, approximately 13 million youth, from preschool to high school, will experience it. Yet, many parents do not even know their child is a victim. One study revealed that as many as 64 percent of youth who were bullied did not tell a parent, teacher or any other adult about it. Will your child be one of them? Would you recognize it and know how to respond?
Aside from prescription drug abuse being illegal, it is highly dangerous. Yet one in four high school students will use a prescription medication for non-medical reasons at least once before graduating. Youth say prescription drugs are easier to access than a six-pack of beer. So where are students getting these prescription meds? 64 percent of youth report obtaining prescription drugs from their home medicine cabinets or from other family members or friends.
Many adults are known to drink alcohol at social functions to “loosen up” and feel more comfortable interacting with others. Well, guess what? Many of our teens are doing the exact same thing. It is often referred to as “liquid courage” because, after a few drinks, a person may no longer feel afraid to get out there and dance, to ask out a love interest or to simply chat with their peers.
October is National Medicine Abuse Awareness month; bringing to light the dangers of prescription (and over-the-counter) medicine abuse and encouraging parents and other caregivers to be a part of the solution.