If you’re one of those people who thinks synthetic marijuana is safe, think again. A recent article told the story of a girl who started using it when she was 17 and is now in a drug addiction rehabilitation trying to quit. And it’s a good thing – people using this stuff have done some pretty strange things, and some of them are now dead because of it.
Some drugs make you sick and some can save your life. Heroin and Naloxone are good examples of each – when someone overdoses on heroin, Naloxone may save their life. But having to go through the process of giving someone an intramuscular or subcutaneous injection isn’t necessarily easy or some people. Now the FDA has approved Naloxone in a nasal spray – which is much easier to administer.
Do you need to know you can help? Governor Jerry Brown in California is making further inroads into saving the lives of addicts. A bill making Naloxone – a drug that can reverse the effects of an overdose of heroin, prescription painkillers and other opiates – has gone through the legislature, with no opposition, and is currently waiting for his approval.
In 2007, when Purdue Pharma was fined $634 million for fraudulent advertising, I wrote a blog warning that drug rehab centers were soon to be filled with people suffering from OxyContin addiction. My prediction was correct – the majority of people getting drug detox and prescription drug addiction rehabilitation are there for prescription painkillers. But the situation is even worse than I thought it would be. Check it out.
A recent news story featured a 64-year-old woman who recently received prescription drug rehab for addiction to several medications. She’d been hooked for 24 years – her doctors gave her one drug after another to help relieve her pain. That she was addicted had never occurred to her. Until she forgot to change her fentanyl patch one morning and became nauseated and feverish. That’s when she took a hard look at how the drugs had taken over her life and she had become a “zombie.”
Recent reports show that most heroin users in Ohio live in nicely-kept suburbia. Are you one of the suburbanites in need of drug addiction rehabilitation? But how did so many people in the suburbs start taking heroin?!
How do suburbanites wind up on heroin?
- One of the most common routes to heroin is prescription drugs. People take them for an illness or injury or stress, then get addicted.
- Then their doctor won’t fill their prescriptions anymore so they look for the drugs elsewhere.
- They may then go to another doctor who does give them more, and they could actually keep doing this – going from doctor to doctor until, finally, they can’t get them anymore. This is particularly true in the States that have a prescription drug monitoring program. The doctors and pharmacists can go into the prescription drug database and see that the person has gone from one doctor to another getting these drugs. Sooner or later, it becomes impossible to get them from that source.
- Next might be friends and family – it is amazing how many people have prescription painkillers like OxyContin or hydrocodone in their medicine cabinets. And they’re often more than willing to share them. Failing that, there’s always stealing some while using the facilities. But this might not last long – when friends and relatives see they’re dealing with an addict, they might not be willing to continue to supply the drug.
- The next step is the regular street drug dealers – that’s when it starts getting really expensive. Usually it’s around $1 per milligram, and the person can take anywhere from 30 to 80 milligrams or more every day.
Then what happens? If the person can’t afford to spend about $100 a day on pills, they might turn to heroin – which might cost $10 or $20 a day.
Huge Increase in Deaths from Heroin
The police in Ohio are very concerned about the number of deaths from heroin as well. Not that prescription drugs don’t kill you – nationwide the deaths connected to prescription drugs far outnumber the deaths from heroin and some other street drugs combined!
Nevertheless, in that area of Ohio, more people are dying from heroin.
No doubt it is because they don’t understand how much they can take safely. Well, safely, meaning without killing themselves. That sounds pretty obvious, but it is an important factor. They’ve been taking pills – there are not as many things unknown about pills as heroin. Pills have an exact dosage and exact ingredients. You never know how strong a hit of heroin is – especially if you have a new supply – or what it will be mixed with.
Keep an eye out for anyone on prescription drugs – especially painkillers – and make sure they get off them as soon as possible. There are other drugs they can take, that aren’t so addictive, to relieve pain if necessary. And then no one runs the risk of turning into a heroin addict.
If you are having trouble getting someone to stop taking prescription drugs, give us a call at 855-895-2090. We can help with good advice, intervention if necessary, and getting the person into the best prescription drug addiction rehabilitation center for their situation.
A recent TV news story said 35% of college kids are taking Adderall as a ‘study drug.’ One in three. If you have college kids and they aren’t taking Adderall, you can be sure many of their friends are. How can you protect your family from this dangerous and addictive drug?
If your kids aren’t already taking Adderall, the best way to protect them is through education.
Here are some facts about Adderall they need to know:
- It is addictive.
- An overdose can lead to heart failure.
- It permanently alters brain chemistry. These particular changes can also change a person’s personality, and can even lead to thinking about suicide.
- Kids who take it for study sometimes wind up taking it for fun – which can lead to addiction and other problems.
- Being a prescription drug, Adderall is illegal. Depending on the laws of the State you’re in, it might be illegal to have it in your possession, take it, sell it, give it away, and so on.
- If there is no prescription and someone has to buy the pills illegally, those pills costs about $10 each – which is definitely going to cut into other college expenses.
- About 95% of the people who abuse Adderall get the drug by going to the doctor and faking symptoms. Messing around with a drug that alters brain chemistry is dangerous under any circumstances and could actually affect someone’s future mental health.
- The majority of college kids who take have a 3.0 average – not the stellar results they think the drug will give them.
- 90% of college students who abuse Adderall – by which I mean take the drug when they don’t have ADHD or some condition for which the doctor would prescribe it – are more likely to binge drink or be heavy drinkers.
- Taking this drug illegally is against the policy of virtually all colleges and universities.
- 4 out of 10 kids who take Adderall think it’s safe because it is sometimes prescribed by a doctor.
Taking Adderall is also an indication that the person is not paying regular attention to their studies. The majority of people who take it do so during exam time – and they do it to be able to focus on study that they have basically neglected throughout the year.
For those who are already taking Adderall, they should stop. Obviously. If they are taking the drug regularly, there’s a change they will need prescription drug rehab.
If you think that might be the case, give us a call at 855-895-2090. We’ll help you determine whether or not prescription drug rehab is necessary and, if so, we’ll also help you find a good drug treatment program that works for your situation
Not many people think that shooting up heroin or snorting cocaine is acceptable. But prescription drugs kill more people than heroin and cocaine combined – so why are we letting the people we care about take them?
The biggest problem is painkillers – OxyContin addiction is very common, as is addiction to anything containing oxycodone or hydrocodone. These drugs were not meant for regular, every day pain. OxyContin, for example, was approved for cancer patients. That’s very serious pain!
But instead of leaving it there, the drug companies, which is not uncommon, marketed them to doctors for other things. And now people take OxyContin for relatively minor pain.
Here’s why they shouldn’t be taken unless absolutely necessary:
- To get the same effect – relief from pain, or even feeling high – you need to continually increase the amount you take. Because everyone’s metabolism is different, you never know how your body is going to respond to taking more and more of the drug.
- The drugs slow down every system in your body, including your heart rate and breathing. If you do anything to slow them down further – like drink alcohol, take another drug (an allergy drug, sedative, tranquilizer, sleeping pill, anesthetic, and so on – your heart rate and breathing could get so slow that they stop.
- They are highly addictive. If someone is in a vulnerable position emotionally, they could get addicted within a week or two.
- Again, because everyone’s metabolism is different, you also can’t tell how much of the drugs your body can tolerate. In fact, people have died from taking these drugs once. Just once.
- When you take painkillers too long, they can actually cause pain. Strange, but that’s the way they work. And that makes it even harder, more painful, to quit.
- Pain is the body’s way of letting you know that something’s wrong with some part of your body. If you’re not feeling that warning sign because you’re taking painkillers, something could be seriously wrong and, because you don’t feel it, you don’t do anything about it.
So… don’t take painkillers lightly. And if you or someone you care about absolutely has to take them, take them for the shortest time possible.
If you feel you might be addicted to or physically dependent on prescription painkillers, or any prescription drug, give us a call at Drug Rehab Referral – 855-895-2090. Not all detox or drug rehab facilities are experienced working with prescription drug problems. We can help you find the right place.
After more than a decade of people getting addicted to OxyContin and filling hospital ERs and morgues, the FDA is finally saying OxyContin’s risks aren’t worth the benefits. They’re not saying that about all OxyContin; just the crushable kind. But most of the people with OxyContin addiction or abuse problems are using crushable pills anyway. Plus, the crushable pills haven’t even been available for a year!
People who crush OxyContin pills and liquefy them or snort them are far from the only people endangered by OxyContin. Here are some meaningful statistics that every parent – and anyone who has to take painkillers or who knows someone who has to take them – should know:
- 16 million people in the U.S. over the age of 12 have used prescription drugs – most of which are painkillers – for non-medical reasons (i.e. to get high) over the last year.
- Those 16 million people include 2.1 percent of 8th graders – barely into their teens and already experimenting with highly addictive highly dangerous drugs.
- The percentage increases as the kids get older – 4.6 percent of 10th graders and 5.1 percent of 12th graders have also taken it without medical reason.
- Prescription drugs – with OxyContin being high on the list – are linked to half of all major crimes in the U.S.
- Most murderers and others who commit violent crimes are on drugs at the time of the crime.
- One in twenty people who need help for substance abuse took OxyContin within the 30 days prior to looking for help.
- 86 percent of OxyContin abusers said they have no prescription for the drug and they bought it illegally to get high. Which, when you add it up, also means that 14 percent of
- OxyContin abusers have a prescription for the drugs and started by using it for medical reasons.
- OxyContin is easier to get than illegal drugs like heroin and cocaine.
That info should give you an idea of how careful you have to be about this drug. If you’re a parent, checked with your kids and if they are experimenting with prescription drugs, make sure they get help to stop them right now. If you need advice on any part of it, call us at 855-895-2090.
Also, if you know someone who needs to take OxyContin as painkillers, help monitor how much they’re taking and for how long – you may help them stay out of trouble with it. If they keep taking them beyond a few weeks, or need to increase their dose to get the same painkiller effect, they might also need help.
The FDA may be warning only about the crushable pills, but it’s clear that the crushable pills aren’t the only problem – the drug is dangerous. Period.
The young man was Richard Fee. He was an “athletic, personable college class president and aspiring medical student.” He had no ADHD symptoms throughout grade school, high school or college.
When he was studying for exams into medical school, he had trouble focusing. He saw a doctor, and was diagnosed with ADHD. But if you read the notes from the doctor, you can easily see that her diagnosis for ADHD was not correct.