The non-medical use of prescription opiates is the fastest growing drug problem in the United States. It cost an estimated $53.4 billion in 2006.
The non-medical use of prescription opiates is the fastest growing drug problem in the United States. It cost an estimated $53.4 billion in 2006. By 2010, enough opiates were prescribed to medicate every American adult around the clock for an entire month. The painkiller hydrocodone is now the most prescribed drug in the nation; and with less than 5% of the world's population, the U.S. consumes 99% of that drug.
Further devastating statistics show that from 2004 to 2009, emergency room visits attributed to prescription drug abuse nearly doubled. It is estimated that 17% of emergency room visits now involve patients seeking opiate drugs.
In Oregon, the percentage of drug treatment admissions for painkillers now exceeds the percentage for meth. Ten years ago, this would be an unbelievable claim to Oregon residents. The increase in the crime rate for supporting opiate addictions has risen considerably and more families are suffering from lost loved ones due to overdose or heavy addiction.
Law enforcement has been eluded by the fact that no stereotype exists for the common painkiller abuser. People of all ages, ethnicity and social class are privy to becoming addicted to the pills, which has made it hard to target any one area of the population. Although prescription drugs have been around longer than the recent increase in abuse seen by the last decade, many are pointing fingers at the encouragement from flawed studies and foundations which pushed the use of these drugs.
As hydrocodone, oxycodone, and other opioid painkillers lead to involve other hard drugs like heroin, people are becoming more outraged by recent results”namely, that the opioids are not even proven to make much difference in those suffering from long-term chronic pain). In fact, the studies have indicated that the use of opioids makes the pain worse and does not remedy the pre-existing problem. The list continues on with the cons involved with the prescription of opioid painkillers. They are highly addictive, where detoxification from them is physically painful. It has been reported that over 25% of patients receiving long-term opioids for chronic non-cancer pain will become addicted. These odds are worse than Russian roulette.
In Oregon, the community along with state officials, law enforcement and healthcare professionals are scrambling to get a hold of the rising situation. Raising public awareness and holding community events to collect unused prescription drugs are ways that the people of Oregon are proactively working to lessen the epidemic of opioid addiction. Like most other states, Oregon has also adopted a prescription drug monitoring system which puts pharmacies as well as physicians on notice for over-prescribing. The problem is that those systems are only good as long as doctors are using them, which many believe they do not. Doctors are being accused for attempting to generate revenue by over-prescribing opiates.
Many are looking to the legitimate community of medical personnel in Oregon to help take a stand in the face of prescription pill abuse. A decade ago, the meth scene was growing similarly as opioid abuse is today. The medical community took a forefront approach to the situation and helped implement solutions, which resulted in a significant decline in meth use and production in Oregon. The community is now looking towards the doctors (those who are not undercover drug dealers) to take this stand once again and aid the state.
A Center for Addiction Recovery's Prescription Drug Addiction Treatment Program provides education on the cycle of addiction, in an effort to help each individual identify behaviors in the cycle and side-step relapse before it occurs. When an individual recognizes behaviors such as non-compliance with medication, excessive stress, denial or reduced effort in recovery groups such as NA, then the individual can STOP the relapse before it begins. It is vital that you or your loved receive professional treatment at a medically-supervised private facility center; it is safe, reliable, and effective. For more information on our addiction treatment programs, reach us at:
Center for Addiction Recovery “ Addiction Treatment Center: 1-800-570-4562
Physical, Emotional and Spiritual Recovery