Parents are a readily available source of drugs for teens. Often, it’s where drug addiction begins.
Joseph Simpson, cofounder of Safer Lock, says for him, “It all started in 2002, when my mother was in a serious car accident, putting her in a wheelchair for almost two years. She endured over 34 operations—to her back, neck, shoulder, and knees, and her doctors prescribed some pretty powerful pain killers. My younger brother Steven, then 14, couldn’t resist experimenting. It was common in our high school. Our mom started to suspect something was going on, and she began hiding her pills in other containers.”
As prescription drugs become less available to abusers of prescription opioids, they often switch to heroin. It’s far less expensive. “Eventually, Steven developed a heroin addiction. It consumed every part of his day for two or three years,” says Joseph. Steven’s low points included dropping out of school and stealing from family and friends. He attended four rehabilitation programs in efforts to become clean and sober.
The initial tragedy—Deborah Simpson’s injury—had spiraled into Steven’s addiction,” says Joseph, “Fortunately, Steven realized he had a problem. He didn’t want to live that lifestyle anymore.”
Steven went to rehab multiple times: Azure Acres in 2010, Narconon (2011, 2012). Slowly, Steven beat his addiction. It is a constant battle for him.
Joseph was angry and disappointed to discover that the prescription abuse epidemic was mostly flying under the radar, largely unaddressed by the medical and regulatory communities. “It’s shocking that medications of this type are not legally mandated to be secure,” he says. “If the medicines are secure, teens don’t have the option of using the medicine cabinet as their drug dealer for the first time.” Joseph came up with the idea for a locking prescription bottle.
Steve Simpson, Age 9
Joey Simpson, Age 8
Steve, Deborah and Joey Simpson – Co-founders of Safer Lock
Next, Joseph and fellow inventor Nathan Langley went through seven generations of prototypes before they had something secure and producible: An easy-to-use medicine bottle cap designed to prevent unauthorized access to prescription medication. The cap has a four-digit, 10,000-combination lock that can be set to a patient’s preference.
Without knowing the combination, no one can access the prescription inside the Safer Lock bottle.
Safer Lock exists to save lives and prevent heartaches for families. To keep medications safe from misuse, Safer Lock makes locking pill storage. Safer Lock is an effective abuse deterrent for children and teens, and helps ensure that young children aren’t accidentally poisoned by powerful medications.
Prescription drug abuse is a big problem in the US. Unless the problem is addressed and preventative solutions are made available, the epidemic will continue to grow.