May 10, 2012 —

Over the past five years, StopMedinceAbuse.org’s Five Moms have shared their personal stories and experiences with teen cough medicine abuse. In honor of the 5th Anniversary, our Five Moms shared their best advice and tips for parents to prevent teen cough medicine abuse at home and in their communities.

  1. Talk to other parents and spread the word.  It’s never okay to think “not my kid.” This type of denial only leads to tragedy.  Cough medicine abuse has real consequences that can truly be life-altering. It’s vital that parents talk to other parents and spread the word that  cough medicine abuse is a problem that ALL teens are in danger of, but that there are resources available to help.  – Christy Crandell
  1. Help your teen combat peer pressure by building their self-esteem.  Home is the one place a child should always feel good about themselves so make an effort to compliment your child every day.  The more you build them up, the less likely they are to listen to negative words from others.  By creating a positive environment, teens are less likely to shy away from uncomfortable conversations with their parents. – Blaise Brooks

  1. Get active in your community.  All members of the community play a vital role in keeping our community and our children safe.  Even the smallest action can reverberate throughout a community so get out there and start talking about the dangers of cough medicine abuse: attend a local PTA meeting, make sure your school nurse has resources, start a book club like I did.  Every little bit counts!   – Tammy Walsh

  1. Safeguard your medicines.  When it comes to medicine abuse one of the biggest dangers is that they are so readily available.  Take advantage of spring cleaning season to take an inventory of what and how much medicine you have in your cabinet.  Most importantly, keep track of your medicines, and tell your friends to keep an eye on their own medicine cabinets, as well. – Becky Dyer

  1. TALK TO YOUR TEEN.  If we have said it once, we have said it a million times-talking to your teen is key to preventing abuse.  According to the Partnership at DrugFree.org teens who talk to their parents about drug abuse are 50 percent less likely to abuse.  So stop reading and start talking!    – Five Moms