Use of illegal drugs remains a major social problem for all communities.  That's not news, you know that.  However, the problem takes different forms from time to time.  Let me share with you some facts you may or may not know and then actions you can take to help address this problem.

 

·        More teens are turning away from street drugs and using prescription drugs to get high. New users of prescription drugs have caught up with new users of marijuana.

 

·        Next to marijuana, the most common illegal drugs teens are using to get high are prescription medications.

 

·        Teens are abusing prescription drugs because they believe the myth that these drugs provide a medically safe high.

 

·        The majority of teens get prescription drugs easily and for free, often from friends or relatives.

 

·        Girls are more likely than boys to intentionally abuse prescription drugs to get high.

 

·        Pain relievers such as OxyContin and Vicodin are the most commonly abused prescription drugs by teens.

 

·        Adolescents are more likely than young adults to become dependent on prescription medication.

 

To address this problem, the Rockwood School District Drug-free Coalition has developed a plan.  It’s purpose is:  To increase awareness of prescription and over the counter drug abuse issues facing our area’s youth and to help eliminate prescription drugs that are no longer being used from homes.  The medicine cabinet in the home is the most popular source for medications of abuse.  This program will provide a place for residents to safely dispose of prescription drugs that are no longer needed.

 

What about those prescription drugs in you medicine cabinet?  What have you done or will you do with those that are no longer needed?  Rockwood’s Drug-free Coalition recently successfully completed a “Drug Take Back” program.  Here’s how it works: on a designated Saturday, you gather up your left over drugs, take them to a designated location, turn them over to the County Police for destruction.

 

With Councilman Jim Meyer’s leadership, Clarkson Valley will host ‘Drug Take Back’ days on a Saturday in February and another Saturday in April of this year with the drop off location at the Fru-Con building (corner of Clarkson Road and Clayton).  Ellisville and Wildwood will join us in supporting this effort.  Regardless, if you have teens in your home or not, this is a great way to relieve yourself of the burden of what to do with these medications.  More details, specific dates, etc. will be forth coming.  So start rounding up those ‘old’ medications.