Teen drug abuse is a fast-growing trend.
It's sad fact, but it's a serious problem parents of teens NEED to be aware of!
According to Dr. Drew Pinsky one out of five teens were recreationally using prescription pills in 2009, then one out of four teens were in 2010!
But, their pre-fontal cortex — the part of the brain that perceives consequences — isn't fully developed. The casualness with which pills are used in our houses is sending a message to them.
Dr. Drew says our attitude toward medication is part of the problem. According to Drew:
"Our general attitude toward prescription drugs is that they're going to make our lives happier and better. Pills are designed to treat medical problems, not to make life easier. [Adults think] you can use these things without consequences, and adolescents don’t see the long-term horizon."
What parents don't see is that pills need to be treated like tobacco and booze. They should be locked up and not just laying around the house or in a kitchen or bathroom cabinet. Drew says:
"Sixty-four percent of [drugs come from] from a friend or relative. There are a lot of pills out there lying around. Sometimes [kids are] stealing from a friend. It's so pervasive and handled so causally in the home that kids can steal an entire bottle of pills and no one notices."
So how can you prevent it? The doctor's advice to parents with teens is:
"Get a lock-down box: a plastic box with a lock on it. Send a message. Your alcohol should be behind a lock door, and your pills should be in a locked box. Nevermind they [might be able to break into it]; you're saying something about these substances when you do that. [You're saying] these need to be handled carefully. That’s really important and nobody does this."
Parenting issues need to change with the times.
It is certainly worth taking the precautionary steps to keep your kids safe and healthy!
[Image via WENN.]
Tags: advice, dr. drew, drug, drug abuse, parenting, parents, tips