Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

Health & Parenting

Font Size

Teen Drug Use Linked to 'Problem Parents'

Survey Blames Drug Abuse on Parents Who Don't Monitor Kids' Activities

Throw Old Drugs Away

Pasierb says parents often don't understand that a wide range of prescription drugs are being abused by teens.

"They've heard about OxyContin and Vicodin in the news, and they think they're OK if they don't have these drugs in the house," he says. "What they don't understand is that there are 40 or more different prescription drugs that are widely abused."

His advice to parents: Take an inventory of the prescription drugs in your home and dispose of old ones, especially sedatives, tranquilizers, pain medications, and attention deficit drugs.

"There are literally millions of prescriptions sitting around on medicine shelves across America that need to be thrown away," Pasierb says.

And parents should consider locking up any prescription drugs that might be abused, he says.

Talk to Your Teens

The prescription-drug death of 28-year-old actor Heath Ledger in January raised awareness about prescription drug abuse, making many teens aware that prescription drugs can be just as deadly as street drugs when they are abused, Pasierb says.

The actor's current high profile as the star of the popular Batman movie The Dark Knight also represents a unique opportunity for parents to talk with their children about prescription drug abuse and drug use in general, he adds.

"Ask your kids what they think of Heath Ledger dying and then really listen to what they say," he says. "Conversations like that will make the difference. It isn't about having the big scary drug conversation. It's about a lot of smaller conversations that aren't so scary."

1 | 2

Today on WebMD

family walking on the beach
two boys in a swing
woman with cleaning products
mother and daughter talking
child brushing his teeth
Sipping hot tea
Young woman holding lip at dentists office
6-Week Challenges
Want to know more?
Build a Fitter Family Challenge – Get your crew motivated to move.
Feed Your Family Better Challenge - Tips and tricks to healthy up your diet.
Sleep Better Challenge - Snooze clues for the whole family.
I have read and agreed to WebMD's Privacy Policy.
Enter cell phone number
- -
Entering your cell phone number and pressing submit indicates you agree to receive text messages from WebMD related to this challenge. WebMD is utilizing a 3rd party vendor, CellTrust, to provide the messages. You can opt out at any time.
Standard text rates apply
Which Vaccines Do Adults Need
rl with friends
tissue box
Child with adhd