Many Teens Who Misuse Prescription Drugs Get Them From Multiple Sources

New research finds 44% of high school seniors who misuse prescription drugs get them from multiple sources, HealthDay reports.

A study of more than 18,000 high school seniors found about 11% said they misused prescription drugs in the past year. Of those, 44% had more than one source for the drugs. The researchers found 30% of teens who misused prescription drugs took their own leftover medications.

A second study of almost 104,000 teens found the most common sources of prescription drugs were friends and relatives; physician prescriptions for opioids; and buying stimulants and tranquilizers illegally.

Both studies found that teens using multiple sources for prescription medications were at high risk for other substance use and substance use disorders.

“The implications from these two studies could not be clearer,” Dr. Sean Esteban McCabe, who was involved in both studies, said in a news release. “Parents, public health experts and clinicians must rally to address this problem. There is a critical need for clinical workforce training to support clinic and school-based education, screening, prevention and early intervention.”

Heroin & the Opioid Epidemic: From Understanding to Action

Heroin and other opioids are ravaging communities across America. Heroin-related deaths increased by more than five times between 2010 and 2017, and drug deaths from fentanyl and other synthetic opioids are seeing a sharp rise as well.

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