ISSN 1753-0849

Childhoods Today Online JournalChildhoods Today

An online journal for childhood studies

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Volume 10 Issue 1 - March 1, 2016

Motivation is Key: The Differing Predictors of Adolescentsí Nonmedical Use of Prescription Drugs

Whitney DeCamp, James Herzig, Brooke O'Neil, and Daniel O'Connell

The concern over the nonmedical use of prescription drugs (NMUPD) has increased in recent years, as the public and substance use experts become increasingly aware of the high prevalence of such prescription drug use. Despite increased research in this area, little research has focused on the motivations for NMUPD. This is a noteworthy limitation, as recreational users may be quite different from those who are using prescription drugs without a prescription to treat a medical illness/condition. The present study uses data from over 11,000 eleventh grade students to model the predictors of NMUPD by motivation for using. Results indicate that recreational users and self-treating users have some similarities, but significant differences were found with effect sizes and direction varying between these groups. Implications suggest that researchers and practitioners alike should be careful to separate self-treatment and recreational NMUPD, which have distinct risk factors