Two-thirds of teens who report abusing prescription medicine admit to getting them from friends, family and acquaintances. Educating yourself and talking to your child about medicine abuse is essential – but there’s more you can do.
Safeguarding your prescriptions is a must. This will not only prevent your own teen, but his or her friends who come over, from taking drugs out of your medicine cabinet or kitchen.
So where do you keep your meds? Here are five things you can do at home to protect your medicines that can make a huge difference in keeping your family safe.
1. Treat them like your best watch or necklace. Think about medicine in the same way you do jewelry or other valuables. There’s no shame in protecting those items, and the same should hold true for your prescriptions and cough medicine.
2. Take them out of the medicine cabinet or kitchen. While convenient, the medicine cabinet or kitchen are obvious and easily accessible locations; so keep your medicine in a place that only you know about.
3. Lock them up. Consider keeping your medicines in a lock box or a safe – and don’t share the key or combination.
4. Count, monitor and dispose of them. Take an inventory of all of the medicine in your home - and dispose of what you don't need. The next National Prescription Drug Take-Back Initiative is scheduled for April 26th. Find your closest participating location and drop off any expired, unused or unwanted medicine you may have in your house.
5. Tell relatives to do the same. Once you’ve taken the above precautions, it’s time to tell others about doing the same – especially grandparents, relatives and the parents of your teen’s friends. A quick chat can go a long way.
From the Partnership at Drugfree.org