When You Need to Know about Prescription Drugs
Perhaps one of the scariest forms of drug addiction is also one of the newest: prescription medication. Affecting the largest array and amount of people in the country, many communities feel powerless to stop it. The first step to understanding any substance of this magnitude is to know the drug itself, how it can occur, and what you can do to get help.
Some important facts:
- In 2012, 259 millionprescriptions were written for opioids. This is more than enough to give every adult in America their own bottle of pills.
- According to the National Institute onDrug Abuse, an estimated 48 million people (over the age of 12) have used prescription drugs for nonmedical reasons in their lifetime. That figure represents approximately 20% of the U.S. population.
- In 2015, of the 20.5 million American (over 12 years old) with substance abuse issues, 2 millionpeople had an addiction involving prescription pain relievers.
- Drug overdose is the leading cause of accidental death in the US, with 55,403 lethal drug overdoses in 2015. Opioid addiction is driving this epidemic, with 20,101 overdose deaths related to prescription pain relievers.
- The sales of prescription drugs has increased by 500% in the past 15 years.
- 4 out of 5 heroin users started by misusing prescription drugs, and of those, 94% state they did so because they could no longer afford their prescription.
Therefore, on top of the danger of the prescription drugs themselves, users are at an exceptionally high risk of transferring to one of the largest killers of all: heroin…