Marijuana isn’t the only danger your teenagers will come up against in the world of addictive substance. You want to prevent them from getting into things like prescription pills and painkillers as much as possible, considering the incredibly high rate of addiction related to opioids in the past few years.
The Addictive Danger of Painkillers
“One estimate has it that 13 percent of American high school seniors take painkillers for fun.” This number will obviously vary from place to place, and it may not seem like much at first, but this means 1 in 8 high school seniors are taking prescription pills that they don’t need and which can easily put them at risk for the development of an addiction. A number of those young people get them from others, but more than a third just take leftover pills from a prescription that they had gotten earlier for legitimate reasons. Wherever the source, or whatever the reason, this is a habit that needs to be curbed immediately.
Part of the problem, as with the epidemic sweeping the rest of the nation, is that there are too many prescriptions being written in the first place. The restrictions on what doctors give out are not nearly strict enough, and even with this year’s new legislation, an excess of unneeded prescription pills are already circulating within the United States (and a new law can’t take them back). While major changes need to be made to what doctors can do in terms of writing these allowances, there needs to be action beyond that to protect people who may already have access to these pills.
Sit down with your child and talk about the dangers of taking painkillers unnecessarily. “According to a large study that tracked ER visits across the nation from 1997 to 2012, the number of kids and teens hospitalized for an opioid overdose nearly doubled during those years.” With more of these drugs in circulation than ever, your son or daughter is at most risk when they aren’t aware of the facts behind the abuse of prescription pills.
It’s true that these numbers (for young people) have dropped since 2012, but that doesn’t mean that we are out of the woods, so to speak, or anywhere near it. So, what can you do to help keep your teen from this danger? For one thing, if you have any such pills in the house, you need to either make sure they are not within reach of the teenager, or, better yet, you could find another way to manage pain. It won’t be easy, but it’s certainly possible. If you set an example of doing your best to find ways around these harmful drugs, your child is likely to take the hint and follow suit. At the very least, you’l be making it more difficult for him or her to get access.
Another step to consider is a house-wide cleanout of old pills. It isn’t likely that you (or whoever) needs them anymore, and even more likely that they’re already expired. If your son or daughter gets painkillers after an injury or surgery, then make sure they are only given exactly as much as they need, and properly dispose of whatever is left.
Learn how to keep your teenager safe from addictive drugs and other substances. Contact The Bergand Group if you are looking into recovery programs for yourself or for others or are seeking education materials about addictions. The Bergand Group is Maryland’s leading addiction recovery center and offers support for those struggling with addiction and mental health issues, including direction for those who may be denying an addiction. We can help you to work through your addiction in a safe and healthy environment where everyone is committed to your care.
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About The Bergand Group:
At The Bergand Group in Baltimore and Harford County, Maryland, our therapists have more than twenty years of experience in the mental health and addiction fields. Our focus is on providing comprehensive mental health care and appropriate care for addictive disorders. We offer both alcohol rehab and drug rehabilitation. If you or someone you know is struggling with alcohol or substance addiction, there is help available. We also offer several other services, including family therapy and counseling. We can help. Contact us today.[/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]