Adolescent RX Drug Abuse

According to a survey conducted by the United States Department of Health and Human Services in 2006, 9.8% of adolescents from the age of 12 - 17 have admitted to using prescription drugs for nonmedical use.


Another common way that adolescents get prescription drugs is from their own self diagnosed condition. This is probably the most common way that they are introduced to prescription drugs. Convinced of their own diagnosis they pursue the prescription drugs through other than legal means to treat themselves and rationalize that they are only taking the drugs a doctor would prescribe anyway.

Finally, according to another study conducted by the United States Department of Health and Human Services in 2005, 15.5% of adolescents indicated that they had been approached by someone selling illegal drugs. What is most shocking is that those adolescents who were approached to try illegal drugs, 61.3% were more likely to try them during their lifetime.

In conclusion, prescription drugs are affecting our adolescents. This is the most rapidly growing area of drug abuse. Learning to identify why adolescents choose certain types of prescription drugs, what attracts them, and how they are obtained could be the difference of life or death. Prescription drugs are not going away. The best thing that we can do as adults, parents, and educators is to become aware of this problem.



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