This article dives into how one clinic is trying to make a difference through patient education. The more knowledge about the problem we can spread the more we can do to fight it. We hope that education, along with products like Deterra, will help curb the prescription drug epidemic in our country.
A 2010 Centers for Disease Control report stated that one in twenty Americans age 12 or older has used prescription painkillers for nonmedical reasons. In addition, many prescription drug users ultimately resorted to using heroin instead, because it was a cheaper alternative. The CDC also estimated that nearly 15,000 Americans die annually from overdoses involving prescription painkillers, and heroin-related overdoses have nearly quadrupled since 2002. These statistics are staggering and clearly illustrate that opioid and prescription drug addiction is a threat to the health of our country.
We know that drug epidemics, historically, are cyclical in nature. When new drugs appear, they are typically not seen as problematic until people willingly or unsuspectingly begin to use the substance to experience a euphoric sensation, which then creates the “new drug of choice”. The most recent example of this cycle is the resurgence of the addiction to opioids — primarily prescription painkillers and heroin.