THURSDAY, May 23 (HealthDay News) -- Only one in 100 parents think their teenagers use "study drugs" (stimulant medications typically prescribed for treatment of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder), while one in eight 12th graders report use of these drugs, according to a report published by the C.S. Mott Children's Hospital.
Researchers from the Children's Hospital conducted a survey involving a sample of 710 randomly-selected parents of children aged 13 to 17 years to examine their awareness of their teens' use of study drugs and concerns about misuse of these drugs. Fifty-seven percent of those contacted to participate responded.
The researchers found that, among parents whose teenagers have not been prescribed stimulant medications, 1 percent believe that their teenagers have used study drugs. However, one in 10 10th graders and one in eight 12th graders self-reported using these drugs. One-half of the parents reported being very concerned about use of study drugs in their community. Only 27 percent of parents reported having talked to their teens about use of study drugs, with black parents more likely than white or Hispanic parents to have discussed the issue. More than three-quarters of the parents expressed support for school policies designed to stop study-drug abuse in both middle and high schools.
"If we are going to make a dent in this problem, and truly reduce the abuse of these drugs, we need parents, educators, health care professionals, and all who interact with teens to be more proactive about discussing the issue," Matthew M. Davis, M.D., director of the C.S. Mott Children's Hospital National Poll on Children's Health, said in a statement.