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Prescription drug abuse is rampant among youths because the common drugs in question are usually readily available. Besides that, these drugs can be easily acquired by the youths who go ahead and abuse them. Prescription drugs are among the type of drugs that are used for psychotherapeutic treatment. In other words, they are the medicine that are intended for use only when and if a qualified medical personnel recommends for utilization in order to address a health problem.
They consist of drugs such as stimulants, sedatives, tranquilizers and other types covering the pain relievers. These drugs are usually obtained by the young adults who want derive the desired effects from them. It is saddening that at the same time; these people do so not knowing that such involvements has health risks. In general, young adults have being found to steal these drugs from people who were originally prescribed or from their school dispensaries. In some instances though, they obtain these drugs from their classmates, family members and friends. Others falsify sickness and are incorrectly prescribed.
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According to a survey made by an organization known as Monitoring the Future, it was been established that prescription drug abuse usually occurs across a three time period. This time period consists of those who abuse the drugs for entirely their lifetime. The next category has those who do annually, as in irregularly throughout the months of a year. In the last grouping are those who are dependent on the drugs on a monthly basis. Above and beyond this, some drugs have been found to be abused on a daily basis. Those young people in the twelfth grade were found to be most abusive of the drugs. However after some time, it was established that there are some in the tenth as well as in eighth grade who are already hooked to the drugs (Beschner and Friedman, 2007).
The National Youth Risk Survey reveals that among five high school students in United States, at least two are likely to have taken prescription drug medicine without an adult's consent or a doctor's recommendation. Furthermore, the survey attests that close to 21 percent of high school students reiterated the fact that they had taken drugs like Oxycontin, Ritalin and Xanax without the recommendation of a doctor (Ries et al, 2009). The abuse behavior was established to be more rampant among the white students who were closely followed by Hispanics while the African Americans came last.
There was little or no difference in prescription drug abuse in terms of sex. Those in senior level were found to be more abusive of the drugs and were closely followed by the freshmen. This abuse has been attributed to the fact that many adolescents and young adults assume that the prescription drugs are safer and are easily available in comparison to the illegal drugs. What they fail to understand is that the abuse of these drugs can lead to undesirable health effects. In addition, they can also cause dependence and even death (Ries et al, 2009).
Why young people abuse prescription drugs
The reasons why the young adults turn to these drugs vary. Firstly, the abuse of stimulants such as Ritalin is due to the belief that the drug will increase alertness. Besides, the drug is abused for purposes of losing weight and for the ecstatic experience achieved through high dosage. This stimulant is easily diverted to those not prescribed for as the drug is widely prescribed by doctors for adults and children suffering from attention deficiency and a hyperactive disorder (Beschner and Friedman, 2007).
The drug is affordable to the young adults as it is cheap. Secondly, the sedatives are usually abused by the young adults as they find it hard coping with too much stress related with their school work and home. They also turn to sedatives due to being over anxious and sometimes as a result of lack of sleep. Broadly, it is argued that they take sedatives for their jitteriness while others resort to them recreationally. Narcotics abuse has also been attributed to some of the same reasons as to why they abuse sedatives but mainly, it is done by the young adults due to euphoria sedation purposes.
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Effects and health risks of abusing prescription drugs
Consequently, some effects have been associated with the abuse of the prescription drugs by the young adults. The doctors are the key feature here as they have being found not to turn down the extra cash they get from the companies manufacturing the prescription drugs. Secondly, these abuse has resulted to the flooding of the streets with many pills hence, becoming a threat to everyone socially. Lastly, these prescription drugs have lead to many young adults becoming addicted due to their continuous usage of the drugs without guidance (Sussman and Ames, 2008).
Young people will most likely continue to abuse of prescription drugs and it is argued that the age of the abusers will continue to decrease as the rate of abusers' increases. The number of youths reported to be admitted for treatment is lower and stable but it is feared to increase after some time as more youths tend to start engaging and experimenting with the drugs. The experimenting finally leads to addiction. This problem will continue to be a challenge to school officials, law enforcement agencies, parents and health care providers who are forced to device new techniques for countering this behavior. Many approaches of countering the abuse have been advocated for but the key ones include methods like educational programs and the informing of youths about the dangers associated with the abuse of prescription drugs by the use of anti drug messages.