OTC and Prescription Drug Use on the Rise

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According to a study recently discussed at an meeting of the American Academy of Pediatrics, while the use of illegal drugs by adolescents has decline greatly in recent years, there has been an alarming increase in teens that are abusing over the counter (OTC) drugs and prescription drugs. According to the study, marijuana is still the most widely used drug by adolescents over the age of 12; however, pain relievers come in second closely. According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health approximately 57% of adolescents ages 12 and over first used marijuana and 23% took other pain relievers as well. The most commonly abused pain relievers were oxycodone hydrochloride (OxyContin) and hydrocodone (Vicodin). According to Hoover Adger Jr., MD, MPH, a professor of pediatrics at Johns Hopkins, “Although illicit drug use is declining, now there seems to be a new threat, and that threat is the family medicine cabinet.” Click here to read an article from Medpage Today that discusses this study further.

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