How Do I Identify A Pill I Found In My Child's Room - Experts Answers
You have the most influence on your kids’ life. So, if you happen to find out something suspicious, such as possible drug use or addiction, know that you can turn things around by involving yourself more in your teen’s daily life. If you feel the situation is out of your control you have options such as contacting professionals, like a family therapist or a teen treatment program. Even if what you find are only prescription drugs, they are a gateway to other harmful substances, as well as highly addictive and could have negative impacts on your child’s health if misused.
Commonly Misused Pills
Central Nervous System (CNS) Depressants
- People who have anxiety, panic attacks, and other mental health issues are the ones who regularly take CNS depressants.
- Benzodiazepines are typically prescribed to treat anxiety, seizures, insomnia, and acute stress reactions. However, “benzos” are not recommended for long-term use since they are highly addictive. Consumers can quickly develop a tolerance and dependence on this drug.
- Non-benzodiazepine sleep medications — Also known as z-drugs, they are the well-known replacement for benzos due to their less severe effects. They produce fewer side effects and have a significantly lower chance of dependence.
- Barbiturates — This type of medicine is rarely used to treat anxiety or sleep problems since they are more likely to cause overdoses compared to benzos. These substances are typically used in certain surgeries to address seizure disorders in mentally challenged patients.
- Opioids work on opioid receptors in your brain and spinal cord to negate the effects of painful stimuli. This broad group of medications is well-known for their immediate effects in relieving pain. Aside from that, they can also give the user a feeling of euphoria or “high,” which is the main cause of misuse and addiction.
- Said misuse can result in severe health complications, including loss of life. Opioids affect the respiratory system, so the drug might suppress their breathing when someone takes too many opioids. The body then shuts down due to a lack of oxygen. Some opioid prescribed drugs are fentanyl, codeine, oxymorphone, oxycodone, hydrocodone, and others.
- In the past, stimulants were mainly used to address respiratory problems like asthma and other health issues like obesity, neurological disorders, and more. People now take them to “boost” their alertness, energy, and respiration. But since the drug can quickly lead to addiction and misuse, medical use has become restricted to certain treatment diseases such as attention-deficit hyperactivity disorders, depression, and narcolepsy. Like the previous two types of prescription medications, stimulants can also produce feelings of euphoria.
- Despite the possible benefits of stimulants, they are highly addictive and can cause harmful side effects. A high dose might lead to severely high body temperature, cardiovascular failure, and seizure disorders.
How to Identify Common Pills?
- Adderall is commonly prescribed for teens who have ADHD to improve their concentration and focus. This helps the patients become more productive in organizing their tasks and be more attentive in class.
- Color: Adderall comes in several colors depending on the dosage. 7.5 mg and 10 mg pills are blue, while the 20 mg pill is orange.
- Shape: The 7.5 mg pill is oval-shaped, and both the 10 mg and 20 mg doses are round.
- Pattern and imprint: This drug comes with “AD” imprinted on it, along with the number of milligrams it has.
- Dilaudid is an opioid used to relieve patients from moderate to severe pain. When misused, this drug is mixed with other substances such as alcohol to boost euphoria.
- Color: It varies according to its dose. The 2 mg dose is orange, 4 mg is yellow, and 8 mg is white.
- Shape: This drug can be three-sided or triangular, and round. It also comes in liquid form.
- Dextromethorphan or DXM is an over-the-counter medicine used to suppress cough. It has sedative, dissociative, and stimulant properties that are potentially harmful when the drug is used for an extended period of time. It can cause dizziness, visual hallucinations, slurred speech, vomiting, nausea, and abdominal pain.
- Color: Red.
- Shape: Usually round, but it is also available in liquid or powder.
- Pattern and imprint: It comes with the sign “C C + C”.
- Ritalin is a drug that has almost the same features as aspirin. This CNS stimulant drug is also used to address ADHD. Like Adderall, Ritalin is misused to improve performance at school.
- Color: 5 mg pill is yellow, 10 mg is green, and 20 mg is white and yellow.
- Shape: Similar to aspirin tablets.
- Pattern and imprint: Stamped with “Ciba,” the manufacturer’s name.
- Xanax is included in the prescription medications group known as benzodiazepines, and comes in various shapes, and is imprinted with the manufacturer’s name. This controlled drug is referred to as one of the “safer” illicit drugs. Using Xanax poses considerable risk of overdose. In fact, in 2019, 16% of overdoses involved benzodiazepines.
- Color: White, peach, and blue.
- Shape: Oval or oblong.
- Pattern and imprint: Usually stamped with “XANAX” and its dose, which usually comes in 0.25 mg, 0.5 mg, and 2 mg varieties.
- Vicodin is a combination of hydrocodone and acetaminophen. It is typically used to treat moderate to severe pain. Since it is an opioid pain reliever, it is also highly addictive. It can suppress the breathing functions of the user, which can be very dangerous.
- Color: White.
- Shape: Elliptical or oval.
- Pattern and imprint: Stamped with “VICODIN,” and its dosage is 500 mg / 5 mg.
- OxyContin is a drug used to treat pain. It has a similar effect to heroin and is also very addictive.
- Color: White, gray, pink, brown, yellow, red, and green, depending on the dosage.
- Shape: Round.
- Pattern and imprint: Stamped “OC.”
Learn about Teen opioid abuse treatment near you
Signs of Drug Abuse
What to do next?
You might feel a mix of emotions when finding that your teen is misusing pills. However, the best thing for you to do is to deal with the problem calmly and objectively. Keep in mind that your concerns and plans should be communicated to your child in a non-judgmental way. A Teen intervention is also a good way to talk with your adolescent about their drug use if it’s gotten seriously out of hand. Also, there are various types of troubled teen programs available that can provide the necessary help and guidance.
If the conversation doesn’t go well, then it’s time to get the help of mental health professionals and other medical experts. Key Healthcare is a teen drug rehab center which can offer the best possible help by providing teen substance abuse treatment to cure their various addictions. If you would like a free and confidential consultation with one of our experts, contact us today.