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Prescription Pill Abuse: 5 Things to Discuss with your Kids

Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that is 50 times more potent than heroin. IPrescription Medst has become increasingly popular in counterfeit painkillers, which are often laced with potentially deadly amounts of the drug. However, it’s also a legal drug that is prescribed to manage severe pain.

Recently 26 people in West Virginia overdosed on heroin that was likely laced with fentanyl, and investigators have also linked fentanyl to Prince’s death this past April.

Today, more than ever, it is important to talk with your kids about the dangers of abusing prescription drugs, which includes taking drugs that were not prescribed to them.

“My friend gave me the pill, and I trust him, so it must be safe.”

“My friends all took one of those pills, and they’re fine, so I can take one too.”

“It’s a legal drug, so it can’t be that harmful.”

These are things your kids might consider if and when they are faced with the choice of abusing prescription pills. Here are 5 things you can talk about today to help prevent them from making a dangerous choice:

  1. First and foremost, taking a prescription pill that is not prescribed to you is ILLEGAL.
  2. You might think you’re taking a “safe” drug because it’s a prescription, but unless your doctor prescribed it to you and it came directly from a pharmacy, you can NEVER know exactly what is in the drug, what it could be laced with, and how it could impact your brain, body, and development.
  3. Drugs impact everyone differently. Even if your friends took a drug and they’re fine, you could take it and have a bad reaction – it could even cause death. Your pill could be laced with something even more harmful, or may have varying amounts of the drug. You just never know.
  4. Prescription drugs, when you take too many or use them incorrectly, ARE harmful – for youth AND adults. Just because it’s legal doesn’t mean it’s safe.
  5. Even if you and a friend take the same prescription, it’s still unsafe and illegal to take one of their pills instead of your own. They may have a different dose or a generic brand that could impact you differently.

We encourage you to use these as starting points when communicating with your kids about the dangers of drug abuse. If you need additional resources and support, check out the Chemical Health section of our Resources page, or call our office at 651-439-8800.

Categories: Chemical Health