A report released by Medco Health Solutions Inc., the biggest U.S. pharmacy-benefit manager, shows that over 25% of children and teens are involved with taking prescription medications – although that number may have risen over the past couple years. Based on the company’s data from 2009, 7% of U.S. children are on a shocking two or more drugs.
Despite the alarming amount of children being fed prescription medication, many of these drugs were intended or tested for only adult use. Research on the drugs’ effects in kids is dismal, and consequences of giving these drugs to children without proper research could result in far more problems than the one meant to be treated. Although popping pills to alleviate pain or fix health issues shouldn’t be the answer for anyone, it is especially dangerous for younger bodies that are given doses which aren’t even tested for.
“We know we’re making errors in dosing and safety,” says Dr. Benjamin, who is leading a new National Institutes of Health initiative to study drugs in children.
As time goes on, it seems that more pharmaceutical pills are taken on a grand scale. Not only are adults and even pets being fed prescription drugs, but now children are also becoming reliant on such medications. Many of the prescription pills are statins, ADHD pills, antipsychotics, and sleeping pills. All of which have been shown to cause considerable harm.
- Statins – Despite being popular enough to rake in around 25 billion dollars in annual sales, statins have actually been linked to over 300 different adverse affects in peer-reviewed research, including cancer and liver damage. This ultimately led the FDA to institute new warning labels that alert consumers to the dangers of statin drugs, but only for two conditions.
- Not only shown to be ineffective, antipsychotics have been linked to suicide, diabetes, weight gain, decreased life expectancy, and triggering an array of metabolic conditions.
- Medications such as Ambien, which is prescribed for insomnia, was deemed a top drug causing memory loss related side-effects. In addition, sleeping pills have also been shown to make way for an increased risk of cancer and premature death. With about 41 percent of adults diagnosed with insomnia turning to prescription drugs, and at least 300,000 children being prescribed sleep aid, it is imperative to pass along this information.
Why are so many children increasingly taking more drugs than ever before? It could have to do with the foods put in front of them every day that are loaded with preservatives, trans fats, high fructose corn syrup and other toxins. It might also have to do with sitting inside all day playing video games, not feeling even a hint of sunlight or participating in physical activity. One thing is for sure, the incredible drug use is certainly a result of drug-pushing mainstream medical professionals, as well as many of those working for the psychiatric community.
If parents educate themselves and their children on healthy eating and exercising, then the amount of prescription drugs will drop drastically for everyone. But most importantly, kids who rightfully don’t know any better won’t be subject to taking unnecessary drugs that could ultimately harm their health for life.