Drug Addicted Newborns

 Drug Addiction  Comments Off on Drug Addicted Newborns
Sep 072016

Among the many issues regarding the rising drug abuse problems in the US, neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS) has been one that has been making headlines today. As described by medical experts, NAS is a cluster of symptoms a newly born baby shows from withdrawing from drugs the mother used during pregnancy. In Tennessee, there seems to be an epidemic of this condition, as a substantial number of newborns have become tangled in the complex web of opioid addiction. According to recent official data, already 485 newborns in the state have been diagnosed with NAS this year.


Neonatal specialist at Niswonger Children’s Hospital, Dr. Des Bharti, said that infants who are born with NAS could also be addicted to certain drugs, ranging from anti-depressants to narcotics, and the condition is sometimes difficult to treat after birth. These babies are then admitted to a hospital and would typically stay there for as long as 3 weeks, where treatment can cost more than $45,000 per child.

Commenting on this, Bharti said, “Our basic idea of admitting them to the hospital here is to treat them with the medication or without medication and make sure they are comfortable and stable at the time of discharge. When we do treat them with drugs, our idea is to bring them to a state where they can be managed at home.” However, it is important to note that some cases are more difficult to treat than others.

The number of infants born with NAS in Tennessee has increased eleven folds since 1999, according to reports, ranking the state as having the highest percentage of NAS births in the country. Now, efforts have been made to address the issue, with medical professionals, like the Sullivan County Health Department health nurse Joy McLain, stating that the task is not easy.

As you can see, Sullivan County is one of the most heavily affected areas in the state. McLain stated that the medical community has been doing their best to fight the growing epidemic in the area over the last 2 years, with the health department helping the community through schools, churches, anti-drug coalition programs and methadone clinics to educate women about pregnancy and NAS. Now, such efforts seemed to have paid up, with recent data showing the epidemic growth rate to be slowing down from last year.

McLain added that a big contributor to the epidemic is the culture and belief that “everything can be fixed with a pill”. While changing culture is no easy feat, she is hopeful that the continuous efforts to fight addiction, combined with proper communication and communal understanding of the problem, will see even better results in the next few years. She said, “Addiction is one thing that isn’t picky about who it chooses. It crosses all socioeconomic barriers, so it’s something that we all have to participate in the discussion.”

It is important to note that communication with health professionals will be the key in helping pregnant women struggling with substance abuse deal with their problem and in fighting NAS.





 Posted by at 9:57 am

First Implant for Opioid Addiction

 Opioid Addiction  Comments Off on First Implant for Opioid Addiction
Aug 042016

A development in the drive to battle addiction to opioids recently came up. The Food and Drug Administration had already given its approval on what can be considered a breakthrough in medicine – the first implant treatment for opioid dependence. This is what is referred to as the Probuphine device.

Although there are already available medicines that will reduce the symptoms of opioid withdrawal, this implant is the first of its kind. Probuphine has already been in existence for more than a decade. For 14 years, patients have been taking this prescribed medicine orally and Probuphine has been an effective drug to manage withdrawal symptoms of heroin and painkiller addicts.

This subdermal implant will be marketed in the United States by Braeburn Pharmaceuticals and will need to be done by trained healthcare providers, particularly physicians who have to be certified to insert these implants on patients. Also, it will not be available in pharmacies and will only be dispensed with prescription.

Supporters of the use of this prescribed drug say that the procedure will make the drug out of reach of children who are at risk to accidentally ingesting the drug in oral form. Apart from this, probuphine also offer other benefits such as providing correct and ample levels of buprenorphine and ensuring patient compliance. It is also given once every six months in an outpatient setting, making it convenient.

However, not all patients can be candidates for the procedure as per the FDA approval. Only those who belong to the category where dependency to buprenorphine has already been minimized to at least 8 milligrams or less are considered although trained health care providers who are certified to perform the procedure can give it to new users of the drug as well as other off-label users.

Understanding Opioid Addiction

Addiction is characterized by cravings and is a chronic disease of brain reward, memory and motivation. It can also manifest lack of impulse control. Opioid addiction is a medical condition that is considered to be an increasing global problem. The use of oral buprenorphine is considered as an effective treatment in managing this medical condition but it does not come without disadvantages such as possible abuse and incorrect dosage of the medication.

The patient will be given four implants of small sticks that are around 26 millimeters in length and will be inserted in the upper arm. The simple procedure will only take less than a quarter of an hour to finish.

The approval by the FDA of the implant will have an impact on the prevalence of opioid addiction in the U.S. with a recorded number of more than 80 people overdosing from opioids. Developed by Titan Pharmaceuticals, the marketing of Probuphine by Braeburn Pharmaceuticals is under a license agreement between the two pharmaceuticals.

Meanwhile, the first series of Probuphine implant trainings will be conducted in San Juan Puerto Rico from August 5-7 for qualified health care providers. In the U.S., more than 4,000 doctors have already expressed their interest to get certified to insert and remove the implant.





 Posted by at 9:56 am

Addicts Turning to Imodium in Record Numbers

 Opioid Addiction  Comments Off on Addicts Turning to Imodium in Record Numbers
Jul 052016

A growing number of desperate opioid users who cannot get their hands on painkillers, such as Oxycontin and Vicodin, are turning to the anti-diarrhea drug Imodium to mitigate the symptoms of opioid withdrawal or satisfy their addiction. The said medication used to be a prescription drug and a controlled substance up until 1988 when it became an over-the-counter drug and became easier to access.

Why Addicts Turn to Imodium?

Imodium has an active ingredient, known as loperamide, which gives a certain high to any individual who consumes it in excessive amounts. A report that was published online also said that abuse of this drug has been linked to two deaths in New York as well as irregular heartbeats which are considered to be life-threatening, with about a dozen cases reported for the period of 18 months. It does not enter the central nervous and acts on the opioid receptors in the gastrointestinal tract. When taken in small doses, it will not result to a certain high but in excessive amounts, it can be fatal.

It was just recent that medical experts have discovered the proliferation of Imodium-abuse although toxicologists and doctors in emergency departments believe this growing problem is more widespread. According to lead author and SUNY Upstate Medical Center clinical toxicologist, William Eggleston, patients are taking it over a period of several months and are turning to loperamide to get high and manage muscle pains and other symptoms of opioid withdrawal.

Meanwhile, spokeswoman for the Food and Drug Administration, Sarah Peddicord, has already expressed their knowledge of the threatening growing habit and confirmed that they are going to do something about the problem.

“The F.D.A. is aware of recent reports of adverse events related to the intentional misuse and/or abuse of the anti-diarrhea product loperamide to treat symptoms of opioid withdrawal or produce euphoric effects.”

Loperamide, if taken in the recommended dose, of not exceeding four caplets or eight milligrams,is not harmful. However, people who abuse the use are reported to take up to 100 caplets of two milligrams on a daily basis.

There have been two cases of two individuals who lost their lives as the effect of taking excessive doses of the drug. One was a 39-year old man who underwent self-medication using the anti-diarrhea drug, instead of the prescribed buprenorphine to manage opioid withdrawal symptoms while another man, who was 24 years old, also died from the use of loperamide.

Since the drug is a non-prescription medication and is not expensive at only $7.59 for 4oo tablets, purchasing the drug in large amounts did not really raise a red flag. Experts also reiterated that the presence of loperamide in patients cannot be detected in routine drug screenings.

Patients who suffer from loperamide abuse show signs of lethargy and can manifest symptoms of heroin overdose. Because of this, the reversal drug given to patients is the anti-opioid drug, Naloxone.

Expert toxicologists are pushing on putting a limit on the sales of loperamide, just like the cap on the sales of pseudoephedrine, a non-prescription drug, 10 years ago. According to Dr. Eggleston, the FDA is going to believe the seriousness of the issue when more people will be creating noise about it.





 Posted by at 10:35 am

Fentanyl Is a Powerful Opioid

 Opioid Addiction, Prescription Drug Abuse  Comments Off on Fentanyl Is a Powerful Opioid
Jun 092016

With fentanyl, addiction problems in the US related to opioid-based painkillers have just got more dangerous. This highly potent painkiller prescribed by doctors for treating cancer is now being produced illegally and rolled out on the streets to deliver a super high that often leads to death. While this drug has been around way back the 1960s soothing pain in cancer patients, it can also kill, with the most recent, popular case involving the death of American songwriter, singer, record producer, multi-instrumentalist and actor, Prince. Now, recreational users are learning that this drug causes an effect that is very easy to overdose on.

Natasha Butler, a mother, has shared how fentanyl has ruined her life, when it caused the death of her only son, Jerome. Having never heard of the substance, she was baffled when doctors told her that her son died from an overdose of it, which is revealed to be 50x stronger than heroin and 100x more potent than morphine. She said that Jerome had never been prescribed with the drug, though shared that Jerome was given by an acquaintance what he thought was a Norco pill, which is a less potent painkiller also based on opioid, but actually contained fentanyl.

Jerome was just one of the ten people who died in just a short period of 12 days in March from pills containing such a substance, contributing to a sudden rise of deaths in Sacramento County, California. Now, investigators are still tracing the source, with similar incidents of overdose involving fentanyl occurring across the US.

Pointing out the potency of the drug, San Francisco-based Special Agent John Martin from the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) said, “Just micrograms can make a difference between life and death. It’s that serious. All you have to do is touch it. It can be absorbed through the skin and the eyes.” He added that this prolific killer is so potent that when law enforcers try to seize it, they have to be in level-A hazmat suits, which are the same kind of gear worn by healthcare workers to avoid being contaminated by the Ebola virus.

Forensic scientist Terry Baisz also shared her concerns about fentanyl being commonplace in her community today, even surprised by the similarity of the drug’s appearance to those being sold by pharmaceutical firms. “They look like what you’re getting from the pharmacy,” she said. “I was shocked the first time I tested this stuff and it came back as fentanyl. We hadn’t seen it before 2015 and now we’re seeing it a lot.” Since the drug has made its way to Orange County, it has been causing the deaths of many people.

Another official who was alarmed by the trend, that she had to get involved, is California State Senator Patricia Bates. Commenting on the lethality of fentanyl, she said, “Two minutes, and you could be in respiratory arrest and be dead. It’s kind of like, get high and die.” She has learned these details as related overdose deaths started rising in areas she is representing, particularly South Orange County. Now, she is trying to pass a bill that places heavier penalties on those selling the drug at high volumes.

Eliza Wheeler, project manager of the Drug Overdose Prevention and Education (DOPE) Project in San Francisco, California is also helping get the word out on the streets about fentanyl. She said that many people do not know about the drug, and her campaign will spread awareness and help people avoid the lethal consequences they get from it.





 Posted by at 2:28 pm

Where to Get Help for Prescription Drug Abuse

 Drug Addiction  Comments Off on Where to Get Help for Prescription Drug Abuse
May 192016

One of the serious health problems in the US is the abuse and nonmedical use of prescription drugs. The numbers won’t lie, as there are 52 million people who take prescription medications for non-medical reasons. Those under this group are young people, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) survey entitled Monitoring the Future.

Senior high school students are found out that 1 out of 12 use prescription pain reliever called Vicodin for nonmedical use. Meanwhile, 1 out of 20 students were found to abuse OxyContin that makes these medications highly abused by adolescents.


Side-Effects of Abusing Prescription Drugs

Prescription drugs such as stimulants, opioids, and depressants may lead to various adverse health effects which include addiction. However, prescription drug abuse may differ in according to age and gender, among other factors. The sad thing about this is that the deaths due to unintentional overdose of prescription drugs such as opioid painkillers quadrupled as of 1999. In fact, it has allegedly outnumbered those that involve cocaine and heroin addiction.


Prescription Drug Abuse Treatment Methodology

When referring a child to a treatment center, it is important to know what to look for. This is due to the fact that not all treatments are designed equally. According to the NIDA, choosing a program must involve treatment methods that have strong scientific evidence. Additionally, it is crucial to note whether it has customized treatments to the individual needs of a particular patient. One good example is to look into the background and history of the patient with drug abuse.

Likewise, it is important to note that when choosing a treatment program must use a combinational approach on therapy. This must be able to address the detoxification and the continuing treatment of the patient.


Role of the Family in the Treatment Process

The NIDA also encourages the families of the victim to consider substance abuse to be tantamount to chronic disorders including asthma and heart disease. For this reason, it is essential to keep the connection to the community since a local support group is important.

Drug Abuse as a Social Issue

According to the NIDA director, it is difficult to determine the greater impact of prescription drug addiction if the social issues of the individual aren’t given any attention. For this reason, it is best to address substance abuse as a disorder from the perspective of the whole person.

Research on Early Warning Signs

The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse is focused on researching to uncover the link that exists between behavioral traits and substance abuse. This will eventually provide parents with the essential warning signs to avoid getting their children to addiction.

It is also their effort to determine if the treatment methods being used works or not. Hence, it is their responsibility to inform healthcare providers and individuals regarding their findings.

Moreover, the National Institute of Health provides resources that should fit adults, children, and young adults who are suffering from prescription medication abuse. This can be done with the use of diagnoses, tests, medications, and similar options for therapy.






 Posted by at 10:14 am

Why Isn’t Naltrexone in Wider Use for Opioid Addictions?

 Opioid Addiction  Comments Off on Why Isn’t Naltrexone in Wider Use for Opioid Addictions?
Apr 232016

The numbers surrounding opioid addiction in the United States are surprising and depressing at the same time. Almost two million people are abusing prescription opioid painkillers, while 14,000 people die every year from misusing these drugs. Prescription-filling of painkillers have risen from 2004 to 2012, while deaths from drug overdoses have risen from 2002 to 2014 and reached an all-time high.

The rise in opioid addiction has prompted many people to take action. President Obama, for example, has allotted more than $1 billion of the budget to fund the fight against heroin and opioid abuse, while several presidential candidates have given their opinion about the topic. Still, there’s one solution that many people have not learned or heard about, and it’s called naltrexone.


What is naltrexone?

Naltrexone is an FDA-approved drug that can treat dependence on opiates (which include heroin and morphine). It works by competing with opiates for the brain’s opioid receptors and blocking the effects of these drugs. It has been approved to help patients who are battling alcohol addiction.

Naltrexone can be taken orally, but experts have developed an extended-release version of the drug that must be injected to patients once a month. It’s considered to be better than other opiate addiction treatments (like methadone and buprenorphine) that need to be taken daily in pill form. Since it’s easier to stick a once-a-month injection appointment than to remember taking a pill every day, experts assume that those who opt for extended-release naltrexone can recover quickly and effectively from their opiate addiction.


Why naltrexone isn’t widely used

Naltrexone sounds like the miracle that many opiate-dependent patients need, so why isn’t it embraced by addiction rehabilitation facilities and used to treat many people? There are several reasons for this, and these include the following:


It’s a drug-based strategy

Many rehab centers focus on counseling patients and encouraging them to change their behavior, which is why they look down on using pharmacological means to treat addiction. But, while it’s certainly essential to modify patients’ approach to life, it’s important to note that not everyone responds well to behavior modification and that naltrexone may be helpful to those who don’t.


It may lead to overdose

Many experts are afraid that people who take naltrexone injections and then stop to go back to opiate abuse may be at higher risk of overdose. However, a recent study shows that this isn’t true and even demonstrates that naltrexone can help opiate-dependent patients who are eager to turn their lives around.


It can be expensive

Naltrexone certainly isn’t cheap, considering that it has to be refrigerated at all times and must be administered by trained personnel. But the cost seems to be worth it since it, aside from saving lives, it saves both the government and individuals a substantial amount in healthcare costs.


Should naltrexone use be encouraged?

The short answer seems to be “Yes”. It’s now up to addiction rehab experts to recommend the extended-release version of naltrexone to their patients. Opiate-dependent patients who want to get well should also ask their medical team to see if they’re qualified to receive monthly naltrexone injections.





 Posted by at 8:00 am

Heroin Rehab Spikes in Jacksonville, Florida

 Opioid Addiction  Comments Off on Heroin Rehab Spikes in Jacksonville, Florida
Mar 292016

Heroin is highly abused in Jacksonville, Florida where it is said to be claiming more lives in Duval County than ever before. This involves cases of heroin for sale, heroin abuse and incarceration related to the drug which has been increasing dramatically. In fact, rehabilitation facilities in the city revealed that they are now tackling nearly 50% more of these cases than the previous years.

“You can easily, especially in Jacksonville they’re everywhere there’s a drug dealer on every corner,” said a patient and mother of two, named Kelsey McCoy. “All you have to do is go up and (ask) do you know where I can find this? And if they don’t know and if they don’t have it they know someone who does. It never fails. You can always find it.” McCoy stated that she went from abusing pain pills to using heroin, explaining that her ex-boyfriend introduced her to the drug. For her, access to it was literally very easy. “It was the cost,” she explained. “Pain pills were getting too expensive. It’s $30 a pill or you could spend $20 and get what would be the same effect of using two pills. It gives you a feeling of power almost.”

However, this powerful, but false, feeling of hope and courage nearly cost her everything. “I have a 4-month-old and a 9-year-old,” McCoy stated. “I’ve always had my children, I’ve always been a good mom. It came down to either I come here or I lose my kids and I’m not losing my kids.” She nearly lost her life, like others close to her home and across the country. According to statistics, deaths related to heroin in Duval County have increased from 17 in 2014 to 45 in 2015.

Commenting on this situation, physician assistant at Gateway Community Services, Danny Smith, said “I’m not surprised because heroin use is up. When people come in (I ask) what’s your drug choice? Heroin. It use to be this, but the heroin is less expensive so they’re using more and more heroin.”

For 5 years, Smith has worked with rehab patients, and seen a 43% spike in heroin use from July 2015 through February 2016, compared with the number in the same period last year. “Parents need to talk to their kids a lot more,” Smith added. “See what they’re doing and be involved with them. I think that will help more than anything else.”

McCoy, who is now just weeks away from completing a rehab program, has warned that while a high from heroin is just short lived, its effects could last a lifetime. “It’s so dangerous just stay away from it,” she said. “You literally could go get one thing from one person one day and be fine and get the exact same amount from the exact same person the very next day and fall out and overdose.”

Also, the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office revealed that the incarceration rate for crimes related to the drug increased from 77 in 2014 to 117 in 2015. And so far this 2016, there have been already 19 arrests related to heroin, and Smith wants to spread awareness that drugs are far reaching and could be found in any neighborhood.





 Posted by at 2:44 pm

Getting to Know Your Addiction – MDA (Sally) and MDMA (Molly)

 Drug Addiction  Comments Off on Getting to Know Your Addiction – MDA (Sally) and MDMA (Molly)
Feb 112016

When Stone Temple Pilots’ long-running front act, Scott Weiland gave in to drug overdose, it got many people grieving and thinking.

Grieving because Weiland was a music legend, and although he was no longer part of the STP band and was touring with a new group at the time of his death, he’ll forever remain STP’s famous lead singer.

Thinking because not many people know MDA – a drug better known as Sally, Sass or Sassafras. So what is MDA aka Sally? It might be better to described as the drug alongside its sister drug, MMDA aka Molly.


Similarities between Sally and Molly

  1. Both Sally and Molly release the chemicals serotonin, norepinephrine and dopamine.
  2. Both act as reuptake inhibitors (RI) – they inhibit the brain from stopping the flow of serotonin, norepinephrine and dopamine chemicals and increase neurotransmission.
  3. Short-term effects of both drugs include nausea, diarrhea, lowered appetite, vomiting, and feelings of wellbeing.
  4. Long-term effects of both drugs include anxiety and depression.
  5. Both drugs cost about the same on the streets.


Differences between Sally and Molly

  1. MDA or Sally often comes in a pill form, while MDMA or Molly usually comes in powder form.
  2. Sally is more stimulant and more hallucinogenic than Molly. Molly is more psychedelic.
  3. Sally may cause erectile dysfunction, which is less or not observed with Molly.
  4. Sally is more visual high, while Molly is more lovey high.
  5. Sally’s effects lasts longer (up to six hours).


Dangers of Addiction to Sally or Molly

Like other harmful drugs, addiction to any of these two drugs brings psychological and physical dangers, which may eventually lead to death. Some people exhibit adverse reactions to both MDA and MDMA drugs. These include loss of consciousness, panic attacks, faintness, seizures, and high blood pressure.

The drugs are likely physically addictive, and users may need to take more dosage the next time around to get the high they wanted. Some people develop tolerance to the drug over time, hence the likelihood of physical addiction.

In another aspect, both Sally and Molly can cause chemical imbalance in the brain, resulting to several mental problems including anxiety, depression, insomnia, and memory loss.


Drug Addiction and Rehabilitation

Kicking drugs off your system entails a great deal of commitment and determination. Scott Weiland had been in and out of rehab since the 90s at the height of his career, and many fans at some point lost hope of him coming out clean for good. That time, it was heroine. Sadly, two decades after, he died overdosing on a more complex drug, MDA aka Sally.

Every one of us needs help at some point in our lives. Acknowledging you need help is the first step to being well and living clean. Rehabilitation provides a controlled treatment process designed to help those with substance abuse problems to work out a healthy and drug-free life. Drug rehab is usually tailor-made to the patient’s unique circumstances, offering a more customized approach. Get help. Live clean. Find out how your local drug rehab center can help you today.


 Posted by at 4:21 pm

Captagon: What You Have to Know about the Tiny Syrian Super-Pill

 Drug Violence  Comments Off on Captagon: What You Have to Know about the Tiny Syrian Super-Pill
Jan 092016

Many people wonder how ISIS fighters can stomach the thought of killing innocent people. Some say that these fighters are brain-washed by charismatic leaders, while others surmise that they’re attracted to the thought of fighting for a seemingly holy cause and/or proving their masculinity.

All of these might be true, but experts suggest that there’s another reason: ISIS fighters may be on drugs.

But not just any drug. Authorities suspect that they’re taking Captagon, a tiny but extremely powerful pill that quickly produces intense feelings of euphoria. Casual users in the Middle East, who appeared on a BBC documentary, revealed that Captagon made them fearless and powerful and caused them to feel like they own the world. One user commented that he couldn’t sleep after taking the drug, no matter how he tried to close his eyes.

Ex-Syrian fighters seem to agree. One ex-fighter who was interviewed by the BBC revealed that he was introduced to the pill by his brigade leader. After taking the drug, he felt physically fit and was awake all the time, without getting tired or feeling the need to sleep. He also became fearless and courageous and felt that he could follow whatever his leader ordered with a brave heart.

These testimonials might make Captagon sound like a super-pill that ISIS leaders concocted to feed to their men. But this isn’t really the case. Captagon is derived from a synthetic medication known as fenethylline (a stimulant) which was widely available in Western countries in the 1960s and was used to treat patients with depression, narcolepsy, and hyperactivity. However, long-term use exposed the drug’s intense addictive effects, leading many countries (including the United States) to ban it.

But this didn’t exactly stop people from using the drug, and it became popular in the Middle East. Saudi Arabia is one of the biggest consumers of the drug, with seven tons (or around one-third of the global supply) landing in the country in 2010. Syria, which is known for being a stopover for drug deliveries from Europe to the Middle East, even took things a step further by producing its own Captagon (which is easy to manufacture using legal materials).

Captagon might be tiny, but it seems to be playing a huge role in ISIS’s battle against the world. Illegal sales of the drug inject millions into Syria’s black-market economy, and experts assume that a large portion of this money ends up in ISIS’s hands. So, aside from making fighters brave and causing them to kill mercilessly, Captagon may also be contributing to the organization’s coffers and giving it the finances to buy weapons and other equipment.

This seems to be well and good for ISIS, but what about its fighters? According to doctors, long-term use of the drugs can result to psychosis, brain damage, and other dangerous side effects. So, while Islamic State fighters might feel like they’re Superman now, they most likely won’t feel so super later.

And it doesn’t stop there. As long as ISIS fighters are on Captagon, they’ll continue to feel the euphoria that lets them harm people and claim innocent lives. It’s a vicious cycle that’s fueled by a tiny but highly dangerous pill.





 Posted by at 2:23 pm

Are Prescription Painkillers Really Tennesseans’ Drug of Choice?

 Prescription Drug Abuse  Comments Off on Are Prescription Painkillers Really Tennesseans’ Drug of Choice?
Nov 282015

A lot of people nowadays have become addicted to a wide range of substances. Some are attached to tobacco and nicotine and smoke several sticks or packs a day, while others are hooked on alcohol and can’t stop drinking. Still others are dependent on marijuana, cocaine, heroin, and methamphetamine as well as various club drugs like ecstasy.

In Tennessee, though, the drug of choice among the residents seems to be prescription painkillers. This type of substance abuse isn’t exactly new since many people over the years have become addicted to pain medicine, but what is alarming is the fact that a large portion of Tennesseans are dependent on it.


Troubling Statistics

This information has been gathered by the Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services of Tennessee. They tracked the use of prescription painkiller among Tennesseans in 10 years (from 1992 to 2012) and found out that it has increased over time. This is true among all age groups but is even more pronounced in people who are in their 20s and 30s.

The department noted that 59 percent of respondents aged 21 to 24 years old pointed to prescription pain medicine as their most-abused drug. Almost 50 percent of those in their early 30s and 21 percent of those in their early 50s also reported the same thing.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t stop there since prescription painkiller addiction can result to disastrous circumstances. According to a recently released report by the state’s Department of Health, 580 people from Northeast Tennessee have died from drug overdose within just five years, from 2009 to 2014. The report also shows that the overdose death rate in this area is well-above the state average and is not showing any signs of slowing.


Prescription Drugs Facts

The question now is this: why do people become addicted to prescription pain medicine? There are actually many reasons, but they usually stem from the fact that these painkillers (like many other types of addictive substance) produce a kind of short-term euphoria. Those who use these drugs begin to crave this pleasant feeling, which causes them to take painkillers in ever-increasing dosage until they become fully addicted.

Many people who are dependent on prescription pain medicine are introduced to it in a seemingly unremarkable way. They may have experienced migraines, incurred an injury, or gone through an operation in the past, which prompted their physician to give them painkillers to keep them away from discomfort. Unfortunately, they become hooked to the euphoria that these drugs give, and they continue taking them even when they no longer need to.


New Laws

This issue has reached the ears of government officials in Tennessee, and they are looking into creating a legislation that will reduce the supply and effectively manage the distribution of prescription painkillers. This way, they won’t be easily obtained by those who have no medical need for it. Lawmakers are also looking for ways to help those who are dependent on the substances and provide them with the opportunity to obtain high-quality treatment.


 Posted by at 9:10 am