There are many reasons why teenagers get hooked on prescription drugs, but new research conducted at the University of Michigan has found that those who are prescribed pain relievers are at “notable risk” for abusing opioid drugs.
A University of Michigan researcher found that teens may develop an increased tolerance to the medication, which can lead to continued use of the drug after the initial prescription is finished.
According to the researcher:
“Once an adolescent has been medically exposed to a potentially addictive medication, adolescents are more likely to engage in nonmedical use and diversion, including buying, selling and giving away pills.”
Earlier this year, a separate study found that one in four teens has misused or abused a prescription drug at least once in their lifetime – a 33% increase over the past five years – up from 18% in 2008.
Of those kids who said they abused prescription medications, one in five (20%) had done so before age 14, that survey found.