Tweens self-medicating with over-the-counter drugs - FOX 35 News Orlando

FOX Medical Team

Tweens self-medicating with over-the-counter drugs

Posted: Updated:
ATLANTA -

Research shows that kids at young ages are self-medicating themselves using over-the-counter drugs.

Georgia Poison Center Director Dr. Gaylord Lopez said they get several calls a week about fifth and sixth-graders overdosing on over-the-counter medication.

"It's not unusual for them to be taking it for pain or even for fever reduction," Lopez said. "You've got to remember, at this age group, parents are trusting kids to take these medications, and of course, that's a no-no."

Each year, as many as 58,000 teens in the United States land in the emergency room after self-medicating with common drugs like acetaminophen and ibuprofen that can be toxic at high doses. That's why the American Association of Poison Control Centers is teaming up with Scholastic to teach parents about the risks.

"These kinds of products in even just doses of three or four pills can be problematic, especially if they don't know, if they're not very heavy, or they might even have medical problems already that may interfere with the way the drug works," Lopez said.
 
Lopez says parents need to take charge of not just prescription, but all medication, storing it out of sight and reading the dosing instructions carefully.

"Many of the calls that we get are from parents who decided to give their child medication, or instructed their child to take medication, and then they read the instructions and then they read the label," Lopez said. "We want all of that to be done ahead of time to avoid any potential poisoning issues."

Lopez says store the medication with the proper dosing device and read the label to make sure you're not giving two medications with the same ingredient, like acetaminophen.

To read more about how parents can safeguard over-the-counter medications around the home, visit http://www.scholastic.com/otcliteracy/parents/

  • More Health NewsMore>>

  • Cancer survivor celebrates 5 year mark with donor

    Cancer survivor celebrates 5 year mark with donor

    Monday, August 18 2014 6:08 PM EDT2014-08-18 22:08:02 GMT
    If Erin Blonshine ever wondered if her perfect match was out there, now she knows. His name: Johannes Saur. Blonshine, a 29-year-old teacher, says "It's very surreal to stand next to him and know that on the inside our immune systems match."
    If Erin Blonshine ever wondered if her perfect match was out there, now she knows. His name: Johannes Saur. Blonshine, a 29-year-old teacher, says "It's very surreal to stand next to him and know that on the inside our immune systems match."
  • Report: CDC scientist kept quiet about flu blunder

    Report: CDC scientist kept quiet about flu blunder

    An investigation into a potentially dangerous blunder at a government lab found that a scientist kept silent about the accident and revealed it only after other employees noticed something fishy.
    An investigation into a potentially dangerous blunder at a government lab found that a scientist kept silent about the accident and revealed it only after other employees noticed something fishy.
  • Can you convert a bully?

    Can you convert a bully?

    Thursday, August 14 2014 4:24 PM EDT2014-08-14 20:24:59 GMT
    As a child abuse prevention specialist at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, Amber McKeen knows bullying.
    As a child abuse prevention specialist at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, Amber McKeen knows bullying.
  • CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL HEROESMore>>

  • Hospital Heroes

    Hospital Heroes

    Children's Miracle Network Hospitals raises funds for 170 children's hospitals across the United States and Canada.  Click here for more on our local heroes!
Powered by WorldNow

35 Skyline Drive
Lake Mary, FL 32746

Phone: (407) 644-3535
News Tips: (866) 55-FOX35

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices