We have already discussed how cough medicines can be dangerous to kids when taken in amounts larger than medically recommended. Now, we move on to how parents can ensure that their kids are as far away from cough syrup abuse as possible.
Check for code words
Even if your kids don’t try to hide it, if you don’t understand the language used by those abusing cough medicines, you will not be able to detect cough syrup abuse in your child. Remember the terms robo-tripping, robotard, skittling, skittles, tussing, red devils, velvet, triple C, and CCC, as these are some of the names commonly used to refer to cough and cold medication abuse.
Conduct a regular medicine cabinet inventory
It is important to keep a checklist of the medicines available at home, and be aware of who uses them and how often. Check medicines that contain dextromethorphan or DXM as an the active ingredient, and do not stock plenty of them in your medicine cabinet. You may also keep them in less accessible places, like in a cabinet inside your own bedroom.
Be vigilant of physical signs of cough syrup abuse
Cough syrups will leave a medicinal odor, so stay close to your kids and try to notice any unusual odor. Also observe for slurry speech, constant drowsiness, or unsteady walking. Be careful when your child frequently complains of cough or colds but does not really show the symptoms. You can also check for empty bottles in his or her bag, garbage can, or room.
Stay on top of the situation. Discuss the dangers of drug abuse with your kids, and ensure that any sign of abuse will not pass you unnoticed.