The increase in prescription drug abuse over the last 10 years is no longer a secret as teen deaths related to prescription abuse skyrocket. In fact this has been thoroughly documented by various surveys and analysis. This increase can largely be attributed to the coincident increase in prescription drug sales and the group that is being greatly affected by this is teens.
According to a new Associated Press Analysis “Pharmacies, hospitals and physicians dispensed the equivalent of 69 tons of pure oxycodone and 42 tons of pure hydrocodone in 2010,” according to the study. “That’s enough to give 40 5-mg Percocet’s and 24 5-mg Vicoden to every man, woman and child in the United States.”
In some parts of the country, the report found that sales increased sixteen fold between 2000 and 2010. Meanwhile, the rise in popularity of prescription painkillers has coincided with overdose deaths and robberies of pharmacies.
The Center For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a rather alarming statistic this week regarding teen deaths. The number of teen fatalities related to poisonings among 15 to 19 year olds increased by over 90% between 2000 and 2009. The CDC’s report states that this is a result of our country’s epidemic of prescription drug abuse.
The Reason For Teen Prescription Use
Instead of street drug teens have been using prescription drugs as they seem like a safer and easier alternative. These drugs include painkillers, depressants that are taken for sleep aid, depression or anxiety stimulants such as those used for ADHD, etc. Teens are also abusing over the counter medicines include cough medicine and cold remedies as well as hand sanitizer. What they don’t know is that narcotic pain killers like Vicodin, Oxy Contin, Percocet or Lortab, including and those medications under the generic names as well as methadone and hydrocodone are highly addictive and are very dangerous.
The reason for this may lie in the ease in which a teenager can obtain these drugs. Whereas getting an illegal street drug costs money and is more difficult to find, these prescription drugs are given to them by their doctors or are being left in the medicine cabinet.
Sadly, each day 2,500 students from 12 to 17 abuse a pain relieving drug for the first time. In fact, prescription medicine is the second most abused drug other than marijuana.
Actions To Prevent Prescription Abuse From The Drug Narconon Program
According to the drug Narconon program, one form of prevention is for the parents to keep medicine locked up and take unwanted prescription drugs to designated drop sites. Prescription drugs are being prescribed these days at an ever-increasing rate. Additional care must be taken to ensure that these drugs are not being abused by teens.
In addition to the drug Narconon program and other organizations like NA, some states are also taking action to curb the epidemic. The Kentucky House of Representatives passed House Bill 1, which provides a comprehensive and systematic plan for decreasing prescription drug abuse. The primary goals of this bill is to allow law enforcement to identify doctors who are over-prescribing schedule II and schedule III drugs, individuals dealing prescription drugs, and addicts. The bill has yet to go through the Kentucky
State Senate and faces major opposition there.
Several other bills to tackle prescription drug abuse have been introduced this session, but they haven’t gotten anywhere. These include proposals to fund multi-state drug monitoring programs, educate prescribers of painkillers and restrict the use of opioids such as oxycodone.
For those who are already affected by an addition to prescription drugs it can be something that seems impossible to handle.
Thankfully with rehabilitation anyone can overcome addiction.
For more information on the drug Narconon program contact us today.