Prescription Drugs

HELP YOUR TEENS BEFORE THEY HELP THEMSELVES

Thousands of teens take prescription drugs not prescribed to them,
without asking.

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DID SOMEONE TAKE YOUR PAINKILLERS OR ANTI-DEPRESSANTS? 

You know your teens will take your things without asking. But what if they took your prescription pills too?

Unfortunately, it happens every day in thousands of Canadian homes.

Our new campaign, "Teen Takers", shows how a simple and common behaviour among teens can have serious consequences.
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Know which prescription medications are most at risk.

Being familiar with the types of medications that may be more popular with teens will help you identify which prescriptions are a potential risk.

Below are the details of the three most commonly abused medications.

Opioid Painkillers

Sedatives

Stimulants

 

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Two things you can do right now to keep your prescription medications
out of the wrong hands:

 

1. Secure your meds

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2. Take back your old prescriptions

Our National Drug Take Back initiative is in partnership with Shopper's Drug Mart and Pharmaprix (in Québec) and Loblaws and Provigo pharmacies(in Québec). The aim is to increase public awareness about the importance of taking back unused and expired medications for safe disposal by pharmacies.

Bringing old medicines back keeps drugs off the streets, out of the hands of kids and out of our water supply!

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  • Opioids/ Painkillers

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    Opioid drugs act by effectively changing the way a person experiences pain.

    Commonly referred to as painkillers, Opioids are drugs that contain opium or are derived from and imitate opium. They are prescribed for pain relief and are only available by prescription.

    Most opioid or painkilling drug prescriptions are non-refillable and, when used properly under a medical doctor’s supervision, are safe and effective.

    Morphine derivatives, or narcotics, come from opioids and are used to therapeutically treat pain, suppress coughing, alleviate diarrhea, and induce anesthesia. When using these narcotics, abusers experience a general sense of well-being by reduced tension, anxiety, and aggression.

    Although painkillers have different potencies and are taken in different ways, when they are abused they all pose a risk for addiction and other serious effects.

     

    Examples of Opioid Painkillers
    Street or Slang Terms for Painkillers
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    Opioid painkillers are the prescription drugs most commonly abused by teens
    Signs and Symptoms of Painkiller Abuse
    Potentially dangerous Drug Interactions
    Signs of Opioid Overdose

    Our Get Help section offers links to a variety of resources to help you and your family find the right kind of help for opioid dependency or addiction.

     

    Fentanyl

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    Fentanyl is a highly potent drug that many recreational drug users take unknowingly, putting them at high risk of an overdose leading to death.

    Fentanyl is 40 times more powerful than Heroin and 50 to 100 times potent than morphine
    Deaths involving Fentanyl

     

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    Fentanyl on the Street
    Signs of Fentanyl overdose

    Our Get Help section offers links to a variety of resources to help you and your family find the right kind of help for fentanyl abuse.

     

  • Sedatives/Central Nervous System (CNS) Depressants

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    Prescription sedatives are central nervous system (CNS)depressants, meaning that they depress or slow down the body’s functions.

    These medications are mainly used to relieve anxiety and assist with sleep problems. Other medical uses include inducing sedation for surgical and other medical procedures, treatment of alcohol withdrawal, seizure control and relaxation of skeletal muscles.

    Often referred to as sedatives and tranquilizers, CNS depressants are substances that can slow normal brain function. Most CNS depressants reduce brain function through a neurotransmitter called gammaaminobutyric acid (GABA), a chemical that enables communication between brain cells.

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    Prescription sedatives and CNS depressants are usually taken in pill form; however, some are available as suppositories or prepared as a solution for injection.

    Sedatives are often prescribed by doctors to treat a variety of health conditions including anxiety and panic attacks, tension, acute stress reactions and sleep disorders. When given in high doses, sedatives may act as anesthesia. Sedatives have the potential for abuse and should be used only as prescribed.

    Examples of Depressants
    Street or Slang Terms for Sedatives

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    Abuse of Sedatives
    Are Teens Abusing Sedatives?
    Signs and Symptoms of Sedative Abuse
    Withdrawal from Sedatives
    Potentially dangerous Drug and Alcohol interactions with Sedatives
    Signs of Sedative overdose

    Our Get Help section offers links to a variety of resources to help you and your family find the right kind of help for sedative dependency or addiction.

     

  • Stimulants

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    Stimulants are a broad category of substances that act to increase the level of activity of the central nervous system. Stimulants increase alertness, attention, and energy, as well as elevate blood pressure, heart rate, and respiration.

     

    The category includes commonly used substances such as caffeine and nicotine, over-the-counter decongestants, (e.g., pseudoephedrines like Sudafed TM), illegal drugs (e.g., cocaine, methamphetamine), and prescription medications.

    The most common use of prescription stimulants is to treat individuals diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Prescription stimulants are also prescribed by doctors to treat conditions such as asthma, respiratory problems, obesity, and the treatment of narcolepsy and other sleep disorders.

    Examples of Stimulants
    Street or Slang Terms for Stimulants

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    Stimulant Abuse by teens
    Signs and Symptoms of Stimulant Abuse
    Withdrawal from Stimulants
    Potentially dangerous Drug and Alcohol Interactions with Stimulants
    Signs of Stimulant overdose

    Our Get Help section offers links to a variety of resources to help you and your family find the right kind of help for sedative or depressant dependency or addiction.