Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

One in 10 teens using 'study drugs,' but parents aren't paying attention

Date:
May 20, 2013
Source:
University of Michigan Health System
Summary:
Just one in 100 parents believe their kids have used prescription stimulants to boost grades, according to a new poll.

As high schoolers prepare for final exams, teens nationwide may be tempted to use a "study drug" - a prescription stimulant or amphetamine -- to gain an academic edge. But a new University of Michigan poll shows only one in 100 parents of teens 13-17 years old believes that their teen has used a study drug.

Study drugs refer to stimulant medications typically prescribed for the treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD); commonly prescribed medicines in this category include Adderall, Concerta, Ritalin, and Vyvanse.

Among parents of teens who have not been prescribed a stimulant medication for ADHD, just 1% said they believe their teen has used a study drug to help study or improve grades, according to the latest University of Michigan Mott Children's Hospital National Poll on Children's Health. However, recent national data from Monitoring the Future indicate that 10% of high school sophomores and 12% of high school seniors say they've used an amphetamine or stimulant medication not prescribed by their doctor.

Sometimes students without ADHD take someone else's medication, to try to stay awake and alert and try to improve their scores on exams or assignments. Taking study drugs has not been proven to improve students' grades, and it can be very dangerous to their health, says Matthew M. Davis, M.D., M.A.P.P., director of the C.S. Mott Children's Hospital National Poll on Children's Health.

"Taking these medications when they are not prescribed for you can lead to acute exhaustion, abnormal heart rhythms and even confusion and psychosis if the teens get addicted and go into withdrawal," says Davis.

"What we found in this poll is a clear mismatch between what parents believe and what their kids are reporting. But even though parents may not be recognizing these behaviors in their own kids, this poll also showed that one-half of the parents say they are very concerned about this abuse in their communities," Davis says.

White parents were most likely to say they are "very concerned" (54%), compared with black (38%) and Hispanic/Latino (37%) parents.

Despite this concern, only 27 percent of parents polled said they have talked to their teens about using study drugs. Black parents were more likely to have discussed this issue with their teens (41%), compared with white (27%) or Hispanic (17%) parents.

"If we are going to make a dent in this problem, and truly reduce the abuse of these drugs, we need parents, educators, health care professionals and all who interact with teens to be more proactive about discussing the issue," says Davis.

Over three-quarters of parents polled said they support school policies aimed at stopping abuse of study drugs in middle schools and high schools. Overall, 76% of parents said they believe schools should be required to discuss the dangers of ADHD medication abuse.

Another 79% support a policy to require students with a prescription for ADHD medications to keep their pills in a secure location such as the school nurse's office -- a requirement that would prohibit students from carrying medicines of this nature that could potentially be shared with, or sold to, other students.

"We know teens may be sharing drugs or spreading the word that these medications can give their grades a boost. But the bottom line is that these prescription medications are drugs, and teens who use them without a prescription are taking a serious risk with their health," Davis says.

Full report: http://mottnpch.org/reports-surveys/one-ten-teens-using-%E2%80%9Cstudy-drugs%E2%80%9D-are-parents-paying-attention


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Michigan Health System. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Michigan Health System. "One in 10 teens using 'study drugs,' but parents aren't paying attention." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 20 May 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130520094454.htm>.
University of Michigan Health System. (2013, May 20). One in 10 teens using 'study drugs,' but parents aren't paying attention. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 2, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130520094454.htm
University of Michigan Health System. "One in 10 teens using 'study drugs,' but parents aren't paying attention." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130520094454.htm (accessed August 2, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Work Can Be Stressful, But Is Unemployment Worse?

Work Can Be Stressful, But Is Unemployment Worse?

Newsy (Aug. 1, 2014) A new study shows stress at work can be hard on your health, but people who are unemployed might be at even greater risk of health problems. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Google (Kind Of) Complies With 'Right To Be Forgotten Law'

Google (Kind Of) Complies With 'Right To Be Forgotten Law'

Newsy (July 31, 2014) Google says it is following Europe's new "Right To Be Forgotten Law," which eliminates user information upon request, but only to a certain degree. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Stroke Signs: Three Hour Deadline

Stroke Signs: Three Hour Deadline

Ivanhoe (July 31, 2014) Sometimes the signs of a stroke are far from easy to recognize. Learn from one young father’s story on the signs of a stroke. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Grain Brain May Be Harming Us

Grain Brain May Be Harming Us

Ivanhoe (July 31, 2014) Could eating carbohydrates be harmful to our brain health? Find out what one neurologist says about changing our diets. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins