Self-Medication by Adolescents

Marcia L. Buck, Pharm.D., FCCP

Pediatr Pharm. 2007;13(5):1-4. 

In This Article


The ability to use prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) medications safely and effectively is an important facet of health maintenance. The transition from childhood, with parental control of medication administration, to independent adulthood is linked by a period during adolescence when most individuals first begin to take responsibility for self-medicating minor illnesses and become more involved with managing chronic conditions. While the transition to self-care proceeds seamlessly for most, there are patients, and families, for whom the transition is more difficult. This issue of Pediatric Pharmacotherapy will explore studies of medication use in adolescents and provide recommendations for assisting with the transition to self-care.


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