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The internet is a wonderful tool that can be used for good or bad purposes depending on the intent of the user. Both prescription and illegal drugs are available online. The neighborhood drug dealer that parents try to shield children from is flourishing online. I’m sure you’ve seen the spam emails that offer “prescription medications for less” or something similar. These illegal online drug dealers offer drugs or tobacco to anyone willing to pay and don’t require a prescription or identification. These online drug dealers bypass government safeguards that require uniformity of quality, a prescription from a licensed doctor that says the drug is intended particularly for you, and that the drug is not counterfeit, meets manufacturing standards and is safe and effective for the prescribed use. Purchasing from an unlicensed pharmacy or drug dealer online or in the neighborhood can be dangerous. There isn’t a way to know if the drugs received are counterfeit since many counterfeit drugs look and feel exactly like their real counterpart. Counterfeit drugs may or may not contain the active ingredient unique to the particular drug. They also may or may not contain harmful ingredients. There isn’t a way to be certain when you don’t purchase from a licensed pharmacy.
Some online drug dealers use the disguise of a seemingly legitimate pharmacy. These rogue pharmacies allow drugs to be dispensed without a licensed doctor’s prescription or without the person even being examined for symptoms. Many of these rogue pharmacies are outside the border of the United States and aren’t restricted by American regulations and laws. The websites of rogue pharmacies can be very convincing and tempting because of lower prices and an appealing design.
Teenagers use chat rooms, email, social networking communities, texting or any other interactive way to communicate directly with each other. Unfortunately, any form of communication can be used to arrange drug sales, promote illegal online pharmacies, provide drug recipes and provide addresses to purchase ingredients for the manufacturing of illegal drugs. Of course the majority of chat rooms and social networking community websites and participants are respectable. It is the responsibility of parents to supervise the online activities of teenagers and maintain their safety just as they do with everyday activities.
Parents need to know with whom, where and when children go online. Online activities aren’t different than everyday activities as far as parental supervision is concerned. Parents also need to periodically watch credit card statements for charges possibly indicating illegal purchases and unexpected deliveries to your home.