Many Parents Oblivious to Teen ADHD Medication Abuse

A recent poll from the C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital in Ann Arbor, Michigan analyzed teen stimulant drug abuse. A new trend has developed among adolescents and college students to use stimulant medications usually prescribed for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in order to stay up later and to have more sustained focus while studying. Many teens report they get better grades this way and do not have fears about negative side effects of the drugs or the potential for dependency or addiction.

Currently, 10 percent of high school students, according to the poll, admit to using stimulants to get ahead in school. At the same time, only 1 percent of parents think their children have used Adderall or Ritalin to attain better grades.

Parents Are Concerned About Stimulant Abuse but Misinformed About Its Prevalence

It isn’t that parents as a whole support their teen abusing stimulants to enhance school performance; it’s just that nobody thinks their child is the one doing it. Despite the fact only 1 percent of parents thought their kid had used stimulants, roughly 50 percent were concerned by the idea of teens using drugs for better results in school. In addition, 75 percent of parents surveyed were in full support of policies targeting this problem. For example, parents wanted to see schools require students who had a valid prescription for ADHD to keep the pills locked up in the nurse’s office during school hours.

Parents Need to Discuss the Dangers of Stimulant Abuse With Their Children

Just over one-quarter of parents had actually addressed the issue of teen stimulant abuse with their children. Since studies show that a parent’s open discussions with their kids about the dangers of alcohol and drug abuse is one of the best deterrents to experimentation, experts feel parents need to get more proactive in this arena. Informing their kids and arming them with knowledge may be just the buffer they need when a classmate offers them something to try. In the absence of true facts, they are more likely to believe whatever they are told by friends whom they think they can trust.

In actuality, experts attest that ADHD stimulant medications can cause any of the following problems when abused:

  • Heart arrhythmias
  • Confusion
  • Acute exhaustion
  • Psychosis
  • Dependence
  • Addiction

Furthermore, when a doctor is unaware that a patient is taking stimulant drugs, they may prescribe a drug for another medical condition that may cause harmful or even deadly interactions. This is a danger anytime an individual takes prescriptions without the consent of a physician.

If your child is abusing prescription stimulants to elevate their academic achievements, treatment is available. Here at Newport Academy, our sole focus is the care and rehabilitation of teenagers struggling with substance abuse. Call now to learn more about our unique and comprehensive program.

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