The Medicine Abuse Project

Most parents would be horrified at the idea they could easily and unwittingly become the source of their child’s drug abuse.  But for those who casually store prescription drugs at home, such a scenario is very real.

Prescription drug abuse has become a national problem, in part because when families sit down to talk with their children about drugs, the focus tends to be on illegal substances. Yet, according to The Partnership at DrugFree.org, more teens abuse prescription drugs than Ecstasy, crack/cocaine, heroin or methamphetamines. The popularity of prescription drugs among teens is partly because many of them believe that because these drugs are not illegal they must be safe to use. And parents often also underestimate the dangers of improper medicine use, because such abuse was not as common when they were teens.

Making the problem all the more insidious, abuse is not always obvious. While some teenagers use prescription drugs solely to get high, others integrate them into their daily lives, quietly self-medicating. They take pills to manage stress, boost their energy levels or even to increase their ability to focus in school. A wide variety of pain relievers, tranquilizers and over-the-counter cough medicines are being abused by teens to cope with everyday problems in school and in their social lives.

A campaign by The Partnership at DrugFree.org called The Medicine Abuse Project, draws attention to just how big a problem prescription drug use has become, and is ambitious in its purpose: to prevent half a million teens from abusing medicine within the next five years. To realize such a goal, they have enlisted partners like CVS Health to help get the word out to families, industry, communities, health care professionals and educators.

On their website, people can take a pledge to help stop prescription drug abuse. They can also watch heartfelt video testimonials about families who have faced prescription drug addiction first hand. You can also learn important facts about the problem and the project through this infographic:

As the leading pharmacy innovation company, CVS Health fully supports The Medicine Abuse Project. It’s just one of the many ways we are helping people on their path to better health.