What Do Our Tweens Know About OTC Literacy?
Are you a parent of a tween? If so, how much does your tween know about OTC Literacy? In other words, what does he or she know about Over-the-Counter medications? A new research study showed that tweens got a failing grade in OTC medicine safety. Yikes!!!
What is OTC Literacy? OTC Literacy is an educational campaign from Scholastic in partnership with the American Association of Poison Control Centers (AAPCC), developed to increase knowledge about over-the-counter medicine safety. In order to evaluate the level of OTC medicine safety awareness among the nation’s tweens and their parents, two national surveys were conducted as part of the OTC Literacy program. One was given to 1,100 tweens and the other was given to 600 parents. Results showed that parents often overestimate their tween‘s knowledge about OTC responsible use, such as the risks associated with not taking OTC medicine as directed. What else did the surveys reveal?
- Tweens answered just 37 percent of questions correctly when asked how to use OTC medicines responsibly.
- Only about half, or 54 percent, of tweens surveyed know OTC medicine can be dangerous when misused.
- On the flip side, parents tend to overestimate their tweens knowledge, believing their tweens know who to ask if they have a question about medicine (75 percent), whether or not it’s ok to share OTC medicine with friends (73 percent) and the risks of not using OTC medicines as directed (68 percent).
- When asked about the difference between prescription and OTC medicines, tweens answered just 56 percent of questions correctly.
- 67 percent of tweens surveyed incorrectly believe they can use someone else’s prescription medicines if he or she has the same symptoms.
- Parent assumptions of tween knowledge was similar to tween test results, with 58 percent believing their tween would understand the difference between prescription and OTC medicines.
- When tested on how to read a Drug Facts label correctly, tweens only answered 53 percent of the questions correctly.
- Just 31 percent of tweens surveyed know it is not safe to take more medicine than what is directed on the label.
- 50 percent of parents admit they don’t believe their tween knows how to read a Drug Facts label on an OTC medicine.
- Tweens correctly answered only 49 percent of questions relating to safe storage of medicines.
- 52 percent of parents surveyed admit they don’t believe their tweens know how to safely store medicines.
Parents play a critical role in helping their tweens learn to be responsible about the use of OTC medicines. In fact, many of the parents who were surveyed were unsure if OTC-related issues were taught in their tweens‘ school. Since National Health Education Standards, which include OTC literacy lessons, are not required to be taught in U.S. schools, it is important for those of us who are parents and guardians to educate and teach the safe use and storage of OTC medicines with our tweens.
Moreover, this early education about responsible medication use is a crucial step in fostering a broader understanding of substance abuse and addiction. By instilling a foundation of responsible decision-making regarding over-the-counter medications, parents can contribute to their tweens’ overall awareness of the potential risks associated with substance use. While focusing on OTC medicines, this proactive approach can serve as a gateway to discussing the broader topic of drug abuse and addiction.
For those seeking information and support in addressing drug abuse and addiction, valuable resources such as rehabnear.me can offer guidance and assistance on the journey to recovery, emphasizing the importance of early education and intervention in promoting a healthier future for our tweens.
Do you talk with your children about OTC safety?
What do you think of the results of these surveys?
This is a sponsored post. All opinions are mine.