New Iowa initiative to curb prescription drug abuse in teens - KTIV News 4 Sioux City IA: News, Weather and Sports

New Iowa initiative to curb prescription drug abuse in teens

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KTIV) -

There's been a lot of talk over the years on how to curb teen alcohol and drug use.  Studies show 80 percent of parents now talk to their teens about alcohol or marijuana, but only 14 percent of parents have discussed the misuse of prescription drugs.

The Iowa Substance Abuse Information Center has teamed up with the Governor's Office of Drug Control Policy for a new public education program called "Iowa Medicine TLC - Talk, Lock and Connect."

According to Emily Blomme, Director of ISAIC, improper use of medicines is the fastest growing form of substance abuse in Iowa.

She says teens are more likely to misuse or abuse prescription or OTC medicines than illicit drugs due to the ease of access.  More than four in 10 teens nationally who have misused or abused a prescription drug say they took it from their parent's medicine cabinet.

Studies show more Americans die of drug overdoses than car crashes.  Dale Woolery, with the Governor's Office of Drug Control Policy, said 60 percent of those are from prescription drugs.  74 percent of the overdoses were unintentional.

Experts say prescription drugs can be as dangerous or deadly as heroin or cocaine, but because they're prescribed by doctors, many don't realize the dangers or consequences.

The prescriptions most likely to be abused are things like Adderall and Ritalin, things for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder or ADHD.

If you want more information on this prescription drug abuse or how to talk to your teen about it click here, or call toll free 866-242-4111.

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