When October rolls around, most of us are thinking about apple cider, pumpkin patches, and Halloween costumes. But, did you know that October is National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month? I’m not talking about double checking Halloween candy after trick-or-treating. I’m talking about approximately one child in every high school class that has abused over-the-counter (OTC) cough medicine to get high, in today’s sponsored post on what parents can do to stop medicine abuse among teens.
As moms and dads, we need to be informed about what parents can do to stop medicine abuse. I have a tween and teen, and even though I’ve been through that stage of life…things have sure changed. Spray paint and lighters were given a “legal age to purchase”, but certain OTC medicines being moved behind the counter, and requiring a signature, wasn’t a thing yet. I have no problem with that, especially when teenagers are abusing cough syrup with DXM (or Dextromethorphan) in it.
DXM is the active ingredient in most OTC cough medicines, and is safe when used according to the Drug Facts label. The problem arises when teens are abusing DXM, by taking up to 25 times or more of the recommended dose to get high. I have to be honest, I don’t know why this is a thing but parents, we have to stop medicine abuse among out teens.
What Parents Can Do To STOP Medicine Abuse
#1 Talk to our kids about life, about their friends, about what they’ve been doing, and about medicine abuse.
#2 Read labels on cough and cold medicines, and be aware of the products containing DXM.
#3 Recognize the signs of DXM abuse, which include vomiting, rapid heartbeat, and loss of motor control.
#4 Look for the PARENTS icon on packages of cough and cold medicines this flu season. This icon will lead you to StopMedicineAbuse.org where you can learn more about teen abuse of these medicines, and how to prevent it! They have helpful articles, free brochures, and even materials for educators. While you are on the site, you can also contact your member of Congress and ask them to get involved.
#5 Share the PARENTS icon below, throughout National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month, to help spread the word to more parents.
My oldest is a freshman in high school, so you can bet this is on my mind and a conversation I’ve had. My teen daughter can hardly take medicine, pill or liquid. She’s in AP classes, plays in the school band, takes dance classes three nights a week, and is in several after school clubs. She has a great group of friends who all seem to be on the right track. I still talked to her about medicine abuse. Even if it’s not something she is doing, I want her to be aware for her friends and classmates too.
Please join me and spread the word to Stop Medicine Abuse by talking to your kids, talking to other parents, and visiting StopMedicineAbuse.org for more information. We have to spread the word to help stop this from happening.
This post is sponsored by the Stop Medicine Abuse Campaign. As the mom of a teenager, any opinions and concerns are 100% my own.