As we approach the last few weeks of this year, visits from family and friends during the holiday season should be a joyous occasion. With the nation’s opioid crisis on the rise along with medical marijuana dispensaries located throughout Arkansas, our streets are not the only place kids home for the holidays, friends, or family members will find drugs or excessive alcohol this season. Our medicine cabinets, bedside tables, desk drawers, liquor cabinets, and refrigerators can be a playground for those experimenting with or addicted to prescriptions, marijuana, or alcohol. Securing these addictive items is an effective way to prevent poisonings, theft, and misuse that could lead to a possible overdose or death.
Here are 5 reasons to consider locking up all medications, marijuana, and alcohol:
- Prescriptions for yourself or your pet or over-the-counter medication can be fatal to an individual if taken or taken incorrectly. Over-the-counter medications for coughing, sneezing, or runny eyes may contain dextromethorphan (DXM). Teens will use cold medications over the counter in high quantities to get “a HIGH feeling” or “Head Rush” for a thrill. The misuse of a prescription or over-the-counter medication can lead to future addiction, overdose, or death.
- Young children or grandchildren have been known to remove the childproof caps on prescription bottles with ease. Parents and grandparents need to be mindful that most medications can look like, smell like, or even taste like candy. Young children are not able to tell the difference.
- Teens or pre-teens experimenting with prescription medication, marijuana, and alcohol is on the rise. Use of these is not good for pre-teen or teen mental development.
- Keep medications out of the hands of hotel workers, airline workers, friends, and family members when traveling.
It is encouraged to count your medications regularly, treat them as personal valuables, and not to flush or trash them. There are several disposal sites in Union County for unused medications. Lock it up, save a life.
SHARE Foundation is a non-profit in Union County whose mission is to improve the health and well-being of the community. The Union County Violence Intervention Plan (VIP) was developed in order to make available a network of area supports, opportunities, and activities focused on best practice strategies for a community committed to changing the odds for individuals and families in need. The VIP can be viewed at www.sharefoundation.com.