Published in the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, a new U.S. study has found that teens who have mental health issues are not taking their prescribed medications to help deal with them.
The study’s researchers interviewed 10,000 children and young teens, ranging from the ages of 13 to 18. They found that only 15 percent took their medications on a regular basis, which is shocking to psychologists. This is not, however, a new trend, nor is this problem confined to the United States. In Australia, kids also aren’t taking their prescribed medication at alarming rates.
The WA Youth Affairs Council’s Craig Comrie asserts that this is a huge problem for our youth, stating, “There have been inquiries into this issue in other states which indicate, that in Australia, there are young people who aren’t taking their medication or following the medical advice of their doctors, and that’s very worrying. We need to make sure young people know that can impact on their health, and it can also impact on their mental health, and that’s the way that will make a difference to the behavior.”
The reasons they believe kids aren’t taking their medications is that some of them are reluctant about being dependent on medications and that so many of them live such disorderly lives that the routine of taking a couple of pills every day is difficult for them to accomplish. Also, some youth are in denial that they even do have a mental illness, making it almost impossible for them to willingly just take their medication.
All of these factors make it hard but our youth will soon realize that without their meds, they cannot and will not live better and more productive lives.
- Dalzell, Stephanie. “Study Finds Mentally Ill Teens Not Taking Their Medication.” Yahoo!7 News. Yahoo!7. 19 Dec. 2012. Web. 28 Dec. 2012.