Our children are using more drugs. No, not the ones that send narcotics officers crashing into your house. It’s those other kinds, the ones doctors prescribe.
Check out these stats on kids 5-19 using prescribed pharmaceuticals from 2002 to 2005, as reported by WebMD:
- 46.5 percent increase in asthma medication
- 50 percent increase in diabetes medicine
- 40.4 percent increase in ADHD drug use
- 15 percent increase in cholesterol reducing medicines
“We are seeing more disease, better detection of disease, and more use of medication,” Donna Halloran, MD, a professor of pediatrics at St. Louis University, tells WebMD. “We don’t know the risks for long-term medication use, but better diagnosis is a good thing.”
Um, I don’t know if I’d consider that fact that children are increasingly relying on pharmaceuticals a good thing.
In Halloran’s defense, she does recommend that “families eat more fresh fruit, stop eating salt-rich fast foods and drinking high-calorie sodas, and engage in more physical fitness activities,” writes WebMD.
But personally, I would freak out if a doctor told me my kids needed to take Lipitor at age 6.