Teen Over the Counter (OTC) Treatment

Inspirations OTC Treatment

Inspirations incorporates an individual treatment plan and an educational component for OTC drug abuse. The purpose of choosing to send a teen to Inspirations is to address the drug abuse behavior immediately and prevent permanent damage to the teen. At Inspirations, teens will learn the skills necessary to live a fun sober life. Teens will gain an understanding of the cycle of addiction, gain knowledge of the 12-steps to recovery, cultivate individual accountability for daily life responsibilities, and begin to focus on family life and participation in the family, respecting and adhering to family structure, rules, boundaries, and guidelines. Teen rehab also provides numerous therapies to address issues that may have led to a teen “self medicating.” Therapies include individual, group, family, trauma, coping skills, education, music and art therapy, as well as a variety of experiential and holistic therapies.

What is OTC Treatment Abuse?

Over the counter drugs (also known as OTC’s), have become an increasing problem for teens, parents and businesses, due to the growing popularity for teens trying to get high and teen drug abusers. OTC drugs commonly abused by teenagers are cough and cold medicines, and medicines designed to treat sinus pressure, cold and flu symptoms, fever, and headaches. The OTC medicines abused by teens contain dextromethorphan, also known as DXM. DXM is found in more than 100 cough and cold medicines.

Popular OTC cough and cold medicine brands include:

  • Coricidin
  • Robitussin
  • Triaminic
  • Vicks

How is OTC Drugs Abused?

Teens abuse the OTC drugs by taking large doses orally, to achieve a “high” and often mix these drugs with prescription drugs, marijuana, other street drugs, and alcohol. Teens may also crush the contents of the pill form of OTC drugs, and inhale the drug through nasal passages.

What are the Short and Long-term Effects?

Teens abusing OTC drugs, have both short-term and long-term effects as a result of OTC drug use, drug abuse, and drug addiction.

Short-Term Effects 

  • Hospitalization
  • Impaired judgment
  • Nausea
  • Loss of coordination
  • Headache
  • Vomiting
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Numbness of fingers and toes
  • Abdominal pain
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Aches
  • Seizures
  • Panic attacks
  • Psychosis
  • Euphoria
  • Cold flashes
  • Dizziness
  • Diarrhea

Long-term Effects –  include restlessness, insomnia, high-blood pressure, coma, or death.

The Drug Enforcement Administration has classified DXM as a “drug of concern”, due to the abuse and addiction to OTC drugs as well as the danger associated with DXM. Although many stores have placed DXM products behind the pharmacy counter, many stores (grocery) still provide the supply of DXM and OTC drugs on the shelves for anyone’s purchase. DXM and OTC drugs are not age restricted for purchase.

Learn more about teen OTC medicine abuse: