Prescription Drugs & OTC Drugs

Prescription Drug Information for Teens

 

 

Taking prescription drugs that are not prescribed to you - or taking them in any way other than directed by a doctor - is considered non-medical use or abuse and can be as dangerous as taking an illegal drug, such as cocaine or heroin. When misused or abused, many prescription drugs can be as dangerous and addictive as "street" drugs.

In other words, even if a medication is prescribed to you, taking larger doses than prescribed, taking it more often than directed, or using it in a way that it is not intended, is abuse and can also lead to severe health consequences and addiction. Know the dangers involved in using prescription drugs without a doctor's direction at www.abovetheinfluence.com.

  • 96% of Marshalltown 11th, 8th and 6th graders surveyed in the Iowa Youth Survey said they have not taken prescription medications in the past 30 days that were not prescribed by a doctor.
  • 93% of Marshalltown 11th, 8th and 6th graders said they have not used over the counter medications different from the directions in the past 30 days.

 

Learn more about prescription drug abuse.

Rx mythbuster fact sheet

  • Myth: Having a Rx prescription gives a patient permission to adjust the dosage and it is safe to continue taking the medicine after it is no longer needed. And if the medication is prescribed, it can be shared with family and friends.
  • Fact: Taking prescription drugs that are not prescribed or taking them in any way other than directed by a doctor is considered misuse or abuse and can lead to dangerous outcomes. Additionally, using another person's medication is against the law. Sharing your prescription medicines with another person is also illegal and could lead to devastating results.
  • Myth: Because Rx drugs are legal, misuse and abuse of these drugs is less risky than using illegal drugs.
  • Fact: Rx medications provide many benefits when used correctly under a prescriber's care. But when misused or abused, they can be just as dangerous as illicit drugs, especially when taken with alcohol or other drugs.
  • Myth: Prescription medications are not drugs of typical abuse among teens and youth adults.
  • Fact: Even though the percentages of teens abusing these drugs is relatively low, compared to marijuana, current trends reveal troubling signs that abuse of these medications is acceptable behavior. What makes it more complicated is that parents, other adult caregivers and those prescribing the medications to teens seem to unaware of the problem.
  • Myth: Rx medications are more difficult to obtain than illegal drugs.
  • Fact: Those who abuse Rx medications report these drugs can be easily obtained from family members and friends. Additional sources include family medicine cabinets and other frequented locations such as kitchen cabinets, night stands and purses.
  • Myth: Parents believe that because Rx medications are prescribed by healthcare professionals, teens and young adults will not abuse them.
  • Fact: Many parents are not even aware that commonly prescribed and over-the-counter medications are being abused to get high. In fact, some do not consider the possibility that their unused medicines could get into the wrong hands, and many do not know how to properly dispose of old medicines.

Source: Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America www.cadca.org

Prescription Drug Information for Adults

Taking prescription drugs that are not prescribed to you - or taking them in any way other than directed by a doctor - is considered non-medical use or abuse and can be as dangerous as taking an illegal drug, such as cocaine or heroin. When misused or abused, many prescription drugs can be as dangerous and addictive as "street" drugs.

In other words, even if a medication is prescribed to you, taking larger doses than prescribed, taking it more often than directed, or using it in a way that it is not intended, is abuse and can also lead to severe health consequences and addiction. Know the dangers involved in using prescription drugs without a doctor's direction at www.abovetheinfluence.com.

  • 96% of Marshalltown 11th, 8th and 6th graders surveyed in the Iowa Youth Survey said they have not taken prescription medications in the past 30 days that were not prescribed by a doctor.
  • 93% of Marshalltown 11th, 8th and 6th graders said they have not used over the counter medications different from the directions in the past 30 days.

 

Learn more about prescription drug abuse.

Prevent Teen Medicine Misuse and Abuse

Rx mythbuster fact sheet

  • Myth: Having a Rx prescription gives a patient permission to adjust the dosage and it is safe to continue taking the medicine after it is no longer needed. And if the medication is prescribed, it can be shared with family and friends.
  • Fact: Taking prescription drugs that are not prescribed or taking them in any way other than directed by a doctor is considered misuse or abuse and can lead to dangerous outcomes. Additionally, using another person's medication is against the law. Sharing your prescription medicines with another person is also illegal and could lead to devastating results.
  • Myth: Because Rx drugs are legal, misuse and abuse of these drugs is less risky than using illegal drugs.
  • Fact: Rx medications provide many benefits when used correctly under a prescriber's care. But when misused or abused, they can be just as dangerous as illicit drugs, especially when taken with alcohol or other drugs.
  • Myth: Prescription medications are not drugs of typical abuse among teens and youth adults.
  • Fact: Even though the percentages of teens abusing these drugs is relatively low, compared to marijuana, current trends reveal troubling signs that abuse of these medications is acceptable behavior. What makes it more complicated is that parents, other adult caregivers and those prescribing the medications to teens seem to unaware of the problem.
  • Myth: Rx medications are more difficult to obtain than illegal drugs.
  • Fact: Those who abuse Rx medications report these drugs can be easily obtained from family members and friends. Additional sources include family medicine cabinets and other frequented locations such as kitchen cabinets, night stands and purses.
  • Myth: Parents believe that because Rx medications are prescribed by healthcare professionals, teens and young adults will not abuse them.
  • Fact: Many parents are not even aware that commonly prescribed and over-the-counter medications are being abused to get high. In fact, some do not consider the possibility that their unused medicines could get into the wrong hands, and many do not know how to properly dispose of old medicines.

Source: Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America www.cadca.org