If there is one thing that most celebrities in Hollywood have in common, it is their dependency on prescription drugs. Celebrities such as Michael Jackson, Marilyn Monroe and Heath Ledger have died due to overdose from prescription drugs.
While much more people in this world suffer from their severe and unhealthy dependency on prescription drugs, it is only when a celebrity dies that a spotlight is put onto this growing epidemic that is taking so many lives on a regular basis all around the world.
The Leading Drug Using Country of the World
Despite representing 5 percent of the world, America consumes over 75 percent of the prescription drugs in it. Americans spend approximately $374 billion a year on prescription drugs as opposed to spending $100 billion on street drugs.
One can easily assume that since prescription drugs sold by pharmaceuticals are regulated, that they are considerably safer than the illegal drugs sold out on the street. However, people misuse prescription drugs far more on a regular basis than they do street drugs. When these pharmaceutical drugs are used with the help of a fake prescription or given freely to those they aren’t prescribed for, these drugs can have a haunting and long-lasting effect that is far more dangerous than any street drug out there.
Prescription Drugs are Worse
Most college students and teenagers believe that if they choose to do prescription drugs instead of street drugs, it will be a safer alternative for them. The reality is quite different. There have been more reported cases of people dying from prescription drug overdose than from either heroin or cocaine.
Since Vicodin and OxyContin started to sell in 1999, there was a 300 percent increase in deaths due to drug overdose all over America. After this point, it was only a downward spiral considering that in 2008, Vicodin and OxyContin became the leading cause of overdoses all over the nation reducing heroin and cocaine to a close third.
How Safe are You with a Prescription?
The next argument in favor of prescription drugs being safe would be the prescription itself. The question is, are these pharmaceuticals safe if they are used with a legitimate prescription? The answer is that, even if a doctor has prescribed a particular drug, the way you consume it and how much of it you consume plays a significant role in whether or not the drug can be fatal for you. Even things such as your tolerance levels, what you have eaten or how much you have had to drink are factors to be considered.
Prescription drugs, even with a legitimate prescription and suggestion from a doctor, can often prove to be addictive for some. It is true that no doctor wants to see his patients get addicted to pain medication but the fact remains that most doctors in America are not equipped to help patients cope with pain and to manage it in a healthy and natural way without using prescription medicine.
Hiding the Problem, Not Fixing It
With drugs such as Vicodin, OxyContin, Xanax, Valium, and Ativan a patient can quickly get addicted. Most of these drugs are used to treat seizures as well as anxiety disorders. Some doctors believe the use to be a controversial one, though, given that these prescription drugs do more to cover up the problem rather than to solve it. Since the initial problem that a patient has remains untreated, the patient overmedicates himself, often leading his own way into an overdose without being aware of it.
The sickest reality of them all is that a doctor named Sanjay Gupta, in a forum on CNN, claims that despite the fact that a patient has just overdosed on a particular drug, it is 91 percent likely that he will get prescribed the same drug again.
Gateway Drugs to Street Drugs
Patients who use prescription drugs are 40 times more likely to move onto street drugs like cocaine or heroin in the future. Seeing as how street drugs provide a cheaper alternative to prescription drugs, it isn’t difficult for a user to move on to the latter.
The scariest thing about drugs altogether, whether prescription or not, is that they provide a release that people crave. One way or another, people go after it regardless of being conscious of the long-term damage they are doing to themselves along the way.
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