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Talk Frequently

More than half (53.1 percent) of people ages 12 or older obtained prescription pain medication for nonmedical use from a friend or relative. Talk to your children about the dangers of taking prescription pain meds that do not belong to them. Father and son having a serious conversation

Use these tips to talk with your children:

  • Plan to have many short talks and choose informal times to have the conversations, such as in the car or during dinner
  • Clearly state what you expect regarding drug use and create family rules together
  • Continue talking as they get older, and let them know you are always there for them
  • For more information, see Talking with Your Child About Opioids (PDF) or visit the Talk They Hear You website

Know the Warning Signs

Although each person is different, there are common signs of potential prescription medication misuse in children and teenagers, including:

  • Mood changes
  • Negative changes in school grades or attendance
  • Dropping longtime friends and losing interest in usual activities
  • Changes in appearance or general behavior, including sleeping and eating habits

Trust your instincts. If you think your child may be misusing prescription medications or if you are concerned about addiction, get help. 

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