With so much attention focused on how to tell if your kids have a drug problem and need to take a 15 hour long drug class, the older generation is often overlooked. So, just how can you tell if your folks have a drug problem?
Teenagers are not the only group needing a strong dose of drug classes. Parents too seem to need reminding that drugs are bad! This according to the Huffington Post.
Abuse of mind-altering prescription drugs by Americans 50 and older is projected to triple by 2020 to 2.7 million, with people over 65 taking more than six unique prescriptions a year on average.
Women are particularly at risk. An estimated 11 percent of women over 59 are addicted to prescription medications.
How can you ensure that your mom and dad -- or even you -- aren't abusing prescription drugs?
Top 5 Signs Your parents Are On Drugs
It's important to recognize what Post-50 drug abuse looks like. Experts say that the top five signs to watch for are:
- frequent falls
- an unkempt appearance
- sleeping all day
- frequently misplaced items such as keys and
- disinterest in activities
What precautions can adult children take to make sure their parents don't slip into drug abuse? First, be vigilant about what drugs are used in the hospital post-surgery.
Opiates are routinely prescribed to manage pain post-surgery. And let's face it, they not only numb the surgical pain, but they also erase Mom's arthritic aches and the pain from Dad's sciatica. But when the morphine drip stops flowing, all the aches and pains come back and that wonderful relief is gone. Mom and Dad very well may ask for more of the good stuff and be given it.
Second, question the need for pain meds that go home with the patient.
Is the pain something that can be managed with Tylenol or Motrin or is Vicodin really necessary? And if it's Vicodin, how many tablets are actually necessary for the first few days at home? Often, senior patients are released from a hospital stay with generous supplies of pain medications that make them drowsy or dizzy.
Third, make sure your parents are getting a good balanced diet and are keeping hydrated.
Your parents raised you to be a responsible adult.Now is the time to make sure they finish out their time on Earth in the most healthy and happy manner.