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Creating a Medicine Cabinet for Teens

By: Ian Murnaghan BSc (hons), MSc - Updated: 24 Jan 2013 | comments*Discuss
 
Medicine Cabinet Drug Abuse Teens

While teens may not seem to be as clumsy and prone to falls as toddlers and younger children, their sometimes active lifestyles that include intense sports and other activities can mean that a well-stocked medicine cabinet is important to keeping teens healthy and protected.

They can tend to ignore their health as well, which makes it particularly important that your teen's medicine cabinet not only treats health concerns, but also that it has preventative products such as vitamins.

Stocking Your Medicine Cabinet

Some of the necessary and more obvious supplies needed for a medicine cabinet directed at teens include plasters, antibiotic ointment, scissors and bandages of various sizes. In particular, teens who play sports are more likely to suffer from cuts, scrapes and broken bones. It's important to have immediate supplies handy to handle any injuries.

Fever reducers such as ibuprofen and a thermometer are necessary for your teen's medicine cabinet. You should also keep hay fever medications, cough syrups and flu remedies on hand to quickly provide relief for the usual viruses and allergies that afflict many teens.

Teens don't always have the best diets, which means that stocking your teen's medicine cabinet with a high quality multivitamin is a good idea. Whether it's missing a meal or consuming too much junk food, poor dietary habits are best addressed with nutrition education. However, you may find that this is challenging, so a multivitamin is your best option for keeping your teen healthy. Girls should watch for anaemia and if diagnosed, will also need to take an iron supplement.

Protecting Teens from Medicine Abuse

The dark side to a medicine cabinet for teens – or anyone in the home – is that teens are now attempting to access the medicine cabinet to get 'high' off the medications inside. This is a worrisome and rapidly growing area of concern for drug abuse in this cohort. Recent studies have found that teens report getting high from the easily accessible medications in their parents' medicine cabinet.

Although a good, solid relationship with your teen is one of the most important steps, you will probably still need to approach this potential issue as a practical one, which means locking your teen's medicine cabinet to ensure that they can't access it at all.

Keeping a Locked Medicine Cabinet

Many parents think that locking the medicine cabinet is a measure only necessary for younger children but given this new evidence of teen drug abuse, it is recommended that you keep your medicine cabinet locked at all times, unless you need to access it on behalf of your teen. You can keep plasters, ointments and similar first aid supplies in a kit that your teen can access, but keep all other potentially harmful medications safely locked away.

A Better Medicine Cabinet for Teens

While you can create an effective, well-rounded medicine cabinet for your teens, make sure that you exercise caution and care by keeping it locked. In this way, you can prevent medication abuse for your teenaged children but you can also ensure that you have a good supply of first aid tools to keep your teen healthy and strong.

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