April 23, 2008 —

I came across this article from a newspaper in Prescott, Arizona, that stood out to me. The piece included quotes from local officials on the issue of over-the-counter and prescription drug abuse. It included a really interesting interview with Judy Bandy Denton, director of emergency services at Yavapai Regional Medical Center that you should read.

This is not just a family problem. It is a community problem, she said. "There are both risk factors and protective factors to consider. Risk factors include early aggressive behavior, lack of parental supervision, substance abuse, drug availability and poverty," Denton said. "Protective factors are self-control, parental monitoring, academic competence, anti-drug use policies and strong neighborhood attachments. "As neighbors, we all can do more," Denton cautioned. "We don't take that opportunity to know one another and help one another."

She made a great point; cough medicine abuse is something that affects an entire community. That's why you should spread the word about abuse to other parents. The more parents who know, the more we can prevent the habit from happening in our own neighborhoods.