Though your home should be a safe place for every member of your family, many parents don’t recognize the potential danger hiding inside their medicine cabinets. Prescription medications can be a tempting target for curious teenagers, and youthful experiments with drugs can quickly lead to addiction.
Every year on April 22, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration promotes Take Back Day, a nationwide opportunity for people to safely and anonymously get rid of expired, unused and potentially dangerous prescription drugs.
When Addiction Begins at Home
Of course, it’s natural to worry that your child will try illegal drugs like marijuana or meth. Still, you shouldn’t overlook the fact that prescriptions are equally hazardous and typically much easier to obtain. Often, teens and adults mistakenly believe that prescription medications are inherently safe because they have earned FDA approval and come from health providers. However, these drugs have a high potential for abuse because they affect brain chemistry.
Most people who start abusing prescription medications obtain them from family or friends. Millions of Americans aged 12 or older misuse prescription drugs annually. Teen drug use links with other risky behaviors, mental health disorders, progression to harder drugs and a future diagnosis of substance use disorder.
Start the Conversation About Prescription Drug Abuse
With substance abuse and overdose issues continuing to affect communities throughout Tennessee, cleaning out your medicine cabinet is one of the easiest ways to prevent your child from getting his hands on addictive drugs like prescription opioids, stimulants and tranquilizers.
As a parent, you are also responsible for talking to your children about the dangers of misusing medications. Explain to your teen that taking someone else’s prescription is unsafe and illegal, and that using a drug without a doctor’s permission can quickly lead to addiction. Kids who learn about drugs at home and feel comfortable talking to their parents are less likely to start experimenting due to curiosity or peer pressure.
Medication Disposal Locations Near Me
The 24th annual Prescription Drug Take Back Day is this Saturday, April 22, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. To find participating medication disposal locations in Tennessee, enter your ZIP code here.
Tennessee also has hundreds of year-round authorized prescription drop-off locations, which you can find on this map. In addition to these permanent dropbox locations, Tennessee’s Substance Use Prevention Coalitions and local law enforcement officials are holding more than 90 statewide Take Back Day events to educate the public about substance abuse and keep medications from falling into the wrong hands.
Adolescent Drug and Alcohol Recovery in Tennessee
If you are looking for a safe, supportive environment where your son can heal from addiction without interrupting his education, come to ARCH Academy. Our team has more than three decades of experience in treating young men based on their developmental progression, using techniques that have proven to engage adolescents. Our holistic approach combines a 12-step addiction program with academics and adventure. Trust us to help your son overcome underlying co-occurring mental health issues, family conflict, relational barriers and poor academic confidence.
To learn more about how we can help you and your family, contact us today.