Posts Tagged ‘prescription drugs’

Prescription Drug Use A National Problem

July 7, 2008

A Riverside, California psychiatrist wrote prescriptions in the lobby of his fitness club and outside ofrestaurants for $100 each. An Orange County man who sold plastic bags of narcotic painkillers had more than $1 million stashed in his house. Outside an LA pharmacy, people peddled drugs, while their counterparts sneaked inside to buy more.

These examples are just a few highlighting the rising problem of prescription drug abuse. According to an article posted in the Chicago Tribune Online, 25 million doses of commonly abused drugs were reported stolen last year nationwide. Health care professionals and dishonest patients are diverting their prescription drugs to willing buyers, which are helping to fuel a shift towards abusing pharmaceuticals as the drugs of choice. Robberies and Internet pharmacies, which don’t require a great deal of information, are also lending a hand to the problem.

A recent survey from the federal government showed that the use of prescription drugs for non-medical uses was around 7 million Americans in 2006. According to Dr. Nora Volkow, director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse the abuse of prescription drugs has been an increasing problem for years.

“Unlike illicit drug use, which shows a continuing downward trend, prescription drug abuse … has seen a continual rise through the 1990s and has remained stubbornly steady … during recent years.”

Another reason for the increase in prescription drug abuse is due to forgery and fraud and the length of time it takes to check out a patient’s background. In order to detect for fraud and pill abuse, pharmacists and doctors can request a patient’s prescription history from a computer database. The problem however, is that they may not receive the information for weeks. Robert Pack, whose children were struck by a car and killed by a woman who was hyped up on vicodin and muscle relaxants, has dedicated his time, life, and money to creating a computer based system that will almost instantaneously check the prescription records of patients.

Obviously something needs to be done to stop the diversion of prescription drugs because the number of people who abuse these drugs is rising at an alarmingly fast rate. For every problem there is a solution, and if you or someone you know has a drug problem in Houston, TX, don’t be afraid to seek out drug and alcohol treatment centers to get help.

For more information about drug and alcohol recovery, please visit The Right Step today!


A Prescription for Danger

June 18, 2008

College students may be walking into a CVS pharmacy drug free, but they certainly aren’t leaving empty handed. In a recent study conducted by Reuters, prescription drugs have become one of the most abused substances by college students. As a matter of fact, one-fifth of these students admitted to having bought prescription painkillers to get themselves high. The survey was comprised of 3,639 U.S. college students whose average age was just under 20 years old. A main factor in the increased use of these drugs is, of course, the easy nature of obtaining them, but another is a large misconception that prescription drugs are not as dangerous as other common street drugs such as cocaine, or heroin. In reality, the stimulants and opioids released by prescription drugs are similar if not just as dangerous as those found in street substances.

A report conducted by the University of Michigan research team showed that although the use of illicit drugs has decreased over the past decade, the use of prescription medications has done just the opposite. In the past year alone, fifteen percent of 12th grade students admitted to having abused prescription drugs. One theory that can be used to describe the rise in prescription abuse is that college aged students have much more freedom than that of high school students. Although many college dorms have a policy that illegal drugs can’t be used on the premises, there is often no policing done to make sure the students abide by the rule. Which makes it much easier for students to get together and abuse any type of harmful substance.

The increase in prescription drug abuse is an ongoing problem in the U.S. especially amongst teens entering college, and hopefully by using information studies and outreach programs, students will be able to realize the harmful effects that can come from using these types of drugs and they can seek out help.

For more information about drug and alcohol recovery, please visit The Right Step today!