CARBONDALE, IL -
Taking prescribed medication is a part of life for many of us. 80 percent of the world's prescription drug use happens right here in the United States. In our area, abusing those medications that come straight from a doctors is a growing problem, especially among children. Helping to fix this problem may actually begin in your home.
Parents, you've talked to your kids about underage drinking and hard drugs, but have you talked to them about what's in your medicine cabinet? Prescription pill abuse is on the rise and it can be just as deadly.
There's a lot of Oxycotin, Codon, Xanex, Klonopin, Adderrall - a laundry list of toxic concoctions.
Rehabilitation counselor, Jennifer Casteel says your teens may be curious about these prescriptions.
At 18, Alex Bang was curious, and stole his step-dad's painkillers. "They would never have thought that I would have gone into their room, into their medicine cabinet, and taken something that wasn't mine," said Alex. Alex says it was love at first pill, "I took and I thought that's how I should feel all the time." In less than one year, he was an addict and graduated to heroin.
Even Wales preferred Xanax, "I would take them from more than just family, friends as well." He mixed stolen prescriptions with alcohol, "I drove 50 miles an hour into a landscape trailer and I almost died."
With help these two young men are on the path to recovery- learning how to get through a day without 'mom or dad prescribed medicine.
"Lock the medications up in lock boxes, we need to get rid of the medications if we're no longer taking them," says Casteel.
Fortunately, there are programs to help you to protect your family. Prescription drug take-back programs are happening across our area this Saturday. Contact your local police or sheriff's department to find out when and where you can get rid of your unwanted, unused, or expired pill bottles.
Attorney General Jack Conway is advocating the prescription 'take-back' day this Saturday, April 26 from 10-2 PM. It will be the eighth nationwide 'take-back' day. The Attorney General will be hosting a 'take-back' event at their office in Prestonburg at 361 North Lake Drive. Kentuckians can also search for a collection site near them by visiting the US Drug Enforcement Administration website.
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