What Do I Do if My Child is Using Prescription Pills?

Written By: Lighthouse Editorial Team

Our editorial team includes content experts that contribute to Lighthouse Recovery Institute’s blog. Editors and medical experts review our blogs for accuracy and relevance. We consistently monitor the latest research from SAMHSA and NIDA to provide you with the most comprehensive addiction-related content.

Published on Aug 14, 2015 | Rehab Treatment Options

Written By: Brian Cattelle

children using prescription pills

There are a variety of prescription pills available to children and that number is growing each year. A child using prescription pills commonly mixes them with other drugs and alcohol. This combination can be fatal.

What are the Warning Signs My Child is Using Prescription Pills?

Physical signs include:
• Bloodshot eyes
• Dilated or contracted pupils
• Slurred speech
• Lack of eye contact
• Impaired coordination
• Lack of hygiene and physical appearance
• Changes in appetite
• Changes in sleep
• Sudden weight gain or loss
• Mood swings
• Erratical behavior
• Paranoia
• Depression
• Isolation

Behavioral signs include:
• Drop in performance at work or school (skipping class, bad grades, calling out of work, getting fired, etc.)
• Financial trouble
• Selling expensive items
• Stealing
• Cheating
• Lying
• Change in friend group
• Staying out later than usual
• Lying about where they’re going
• Risky or suspicious behavior
• Legal issues

Find out if a Child Could Overdose with Pills in Your Medicine Cabinet! 

How Do I Talk to My Child About Prescription Pill Abuse!?

Confronting a child using prescription pills can be difficult. There’s no way around this, it’s going to be uncomfortable, painful, and probably awkward. However, if your child is abusing prescription pills, it’s a vital step to confront them. The first step to solving any problem is identifying that it exists.

Getting advice from an interventionist or drug counselor is a good way to start. Talking to treatment centers is another way to start. Many, if not all, children using prescription pills won’t want to stop. They may not think they have a problem, or they may be too scared to do anything about their problem.

Rarely, the child abusing prescription pills will want to stop. They may be too nervous to admit to you, their parent, that they’re addicted. Having an open, honest, and human conversation, can go a long way to getting help for your child.

The child abusing prescription pills isn’t usually aware of the damage they’re causing themselves. They’re certainly not aware of the pain they’re causing you. You’ll want to express your concern, and lay down the consequences of further use.

What’s the Next Step?

First, monitor your child’s prescription pill use. This’ll keep your child, and the rest of the family, safe. If your child is abusing opioid or benzodiazepine type drugs, they may be physically addicted, and need to detox. Both these drugs are extremely addictive and carry with them harmful withdrawal symptoms.

Drug treatment is usually the next step. Talk to your family, friends, your child’s friends, and build a large support network. See if any of these people have gone to, or had loved ones in, treatment. Research drug and alcohol treatment centers online. Through participating and engaging in treatment, your child will learn about the disease of addiction and the solution of recovery.

Is codeine as harmless as many think?

Adolescent prescription pill addiction is a complicated and often misunderstood disorder. Quality addiction treatment requires a comprehensive and compassionate approach. Fortunately, that’s where Lighthouse Recovery Institute steps in.

Recovery is possible for anyone and everyone. Learn how we help you or a loved one take the first step towards a new life.

Lighthouse Recovery Institute: Guiding You to a Brighter Tomorrow

Cite This Article
Lighthouse Editorial Team. "What Do I Do if My Child is Using Prescription Pills?." Lighthouse Recovery Institute., Published on Aug 14, 2015, https://lighthouserecoveryinstitute.com/what-do-i-do-if-my-child-is-using-prescription-pills/.


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