STEP 1: MONITOR
Parents are in an influential position to immediately help reduce teen access to prescription drugs because these drugs are found in the home. But how aware are you? Think about this: would you know if some of your pills were missing? From this day forward, make sure you can honestly answer, ‘yes.’
STEP 2: SECURE
Teens abuse prescription drugs because they are easily accessible and either free or inexpensive. In fact, in 2013, studies have indicated that 60-68 percent of kids age 12 to 17 who have abused pain relievers say they got them from their friends or relatives, typically without their knowledge. Approach securing your prescriptions the same way you would other valuables in your home, like jewelry or cash. There’s no shame in helping protect those items. The same holds true for your medications.
STEP 3: DISPOSE
Safely disposing of expired or unused prescription medications is a critical step in helping protect your teens. Here’s how to help safeguard your family and home, and decrease the opportunity for your teens or their friends to abuse your medications.
Thom Kessler, LMFT, RAS
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Marriage & Family Therapist and Registered Addiction Specialist