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Children Taking Sedative Prescriptions and Sleeping Pills in Damascus – Who is To Blame?

A resident of Jdeidet Artouz told Athr that beggar children in the area display "peculiar facial expressions".

In various areas of Damascus countryside, there is a concerning trend of sedative and sleeping drug usage among children and adolescents. Many youngsters are allocating their daily allowances to purchase these pills, often acquiring prescriptions from lenient doctors.

A woman residing in the Kiswah area expressed her distress to Athr about the escalating cases of child abuse involving drugs and hashish, particularly among beggars and school dropouts. She recounted witnessing two ten-year-old children sharing a cigarette while exhibiting signs of poor health.

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A resident of Jdeidet Artouz in Damascus countryside shared with Athr that beggar children in the area display peculiar facial expressions, striking appearances, and abnormal physical signs.

“Aya,” a pharmacist from Jaramana, disclosed that there has been a recent surge in the demand for medical drugs containing narcotic substances, notably among children and adolescents. She highlighted that a significant portion of patients possess prescriptions from doctors to obtain these drugs.

Adding to the concern, “Majd,” a pharmacist in Jaramana, reported instances of 18-year-old girls seeking sedative and sleeping drugs with narcotic substances at the pharmacy. Majd emphasized the practice of refraining from dispensing such medicines without a valid prescription.

An old phenomenon 

Pediatrician Dr. Ali Nofal informed Athr Press that while children’s misuse of prohibited pills is not a new issue, the prevalence of this phenomenon remains relatively limited. He emphasized that addressing this concern is closely tied to the initial awareness parents have regarding their children, their approach in dealing with them, and their ability to contain them. Dr. Nofal highlighted, “The treatment of the child is contingent on several factors, with the most crucial being the quantity of narcotic pills ingested. The duration of treatment is determined based on the optimal timeframe for the drug to exit the child’s body, achieved through a combination of healthy food, physical activity, and strict avoidance of forbidden pills.”

In accordance with Syrian law, individuals who supply narcotic substances for unauthorized use or facilitate their use without lawful authorization are subject to punishment. The penalties include temporary detention for no less than 10 years and a fine ranging from 500,000 to 2 million Syrian pounds.


This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.

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