Toolkit Aims to Teach Teens About Prescription Drug Dangers

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Prescription drugs deliver considerable benefit for those who are in chronic pain, dealing with a disease or trying to overcome a mental illness. For others, however, prescription drugs have provided a fix to feed an addiction. And, according to a Medical News Today report, educating teens about the potential abuse could help prevent risky use.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration has gathered data to show that roughly 2,500 young people between the ages of 12 and 17 abuse prescription pain killers for the first time each day.

The problem has grown to the point that unintentional prescription drug poisoning has emerged as the second leading cause of accidental death in the United States. Their prescription status, however, leads many teens to believe that these drugs are safer and even less addictive to illegal narcotics.

Cardinal Health Foundation and the Ohio State University College Of Pharmacy have partnered together to help educate teens about prescription drug abuse and the risks they encounter when they don’t understand the potency of the medication and take it for recreational purposes.

The two organizations have developed the GenerationRx Youth Toolkit which contains all of the materials necessary to deliver a highly interactive, 30-60 minute presentation to a teen audience. The topic of focus is prescription drug abuse and the purpose is to reverse the trend in this country.

The toolkit has already been downloaded nearly 1,000 times and is used to encourage community leaders, healthcare providers, teens, parents and college students to work actively to prevent prescription drug abuse.

With more than one-third of teens feeling pressure to abuse prescription drugs and nearly 40 percent perceiving them as safer than street drugs, the time to educate is now.

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