Washington, D.C. -- Following is a statement by Linda A. Suydam, D.P.A., president of the Consumer Healthcare Products Association (CHPA), regarding today's release of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)'s Monitoring the Future survey, which includes data on the non-medical use of medicines containing dextromethorphan among 8th, 10th, and 12th grade students:
"The Monitoring the Future survey provides us all with valuable insights into the prevalence of the non-medical use of dextromethorphan. We applaud the survey authors for shedding light on this trend surrounding the abuse of medicine. Combined with data gathered by the Partnership for a Drug-Free America for the last two years, this information underscores the critical need for education and awareness about the troubling trend of teenagers taking vast amounts of otherwise safe medicines both prescription and nonprescription to get high. Substance abuse experts tell us and we agree that education is the most effective way to keep kids from abusing all types of substances, including medicines. In fact, studies have shown that teens who talk about drugs with their parents are half as likely to use drugs.
"Consumers have relied on cough medicines that contain dextromethorphan for over 50 years, and, as the makers of over-the-counter cough medicines, we take our responsibility toward public health seriously. We believe strongly in the power of education and are committed to raising awareness about medicine abuse and giving parents and other key influencers in teens' lives the tools they need to stop this preventable problem.
"With this in mind, CHPA is taking the lead in educating parents about this preventable abuse problem and empowering them to take action. With the Partnership for a Drug-Free America, we have created a host of English- and Spanish-language educational resources for parents and community leaders, including public service announcements, brochures,