We now live in an age when prescription drug medicine is advertised and promoted on television, radio, print and the Internet as much as many other consumer products.
Our current society is a culture that now has available a multitude of medications for just about any problem you have — depression, obesity, sleeplessness and so on. Gone are the days when the most people knew about prescription medication was that they were good for pain.
Understandably for the intended patient, these medications offer relief they could have not had years ago. Unfortunately, a large group of people (teens and adults) have found in prescription medication, an alternative to alcohol and illegal drugs. And since these medications are as common today as a multivitamin, the challenge to help prevent this abuse is extremely difficult. Benchmark Recovery Center has seen this issue first hand as the amount of people addicted to prescription drugs continues to rise. We are willing to do what it takes to help combat this growing epidemic. The first step, the most important step, is getting you here.
Prescription Drug Addiction — Spiraling Out Of Control
Popular media and news organizations spend an inordinate amount of time shining their lights on celebrities and their troubles with addiction and rehab. But only recently when actor Heath Ledger died of a prescription drug overdose did the issue of prescription drug addiction get some attention, albeit briefly. Once again though, we’ve grown accustomed to hearing these tragic celebrity stories to the point where it’s no longer shocking enough to get everyone concerned. The effects of tragedies like Ledger’s is only short lived. Benchmark Recovery Center does not want this to be the norm. We want people to know just how much of a problem prescription drug abuse is. But when you have doctors who won’t acknowledge it, and our society as a whole accustomed to either being on some kind of medication or knowing people that are, there lies a perfect opportunity for this problem to become an epidemic. Other factors like the following also contribute:
- Many doctors concerned with the under treatment of pain and other issues, now prescribe medications to outpatients more than ever.
- Some who get these medications don’t always use the full amount leaving a surplus of medications that some might choose to sell or even give to friends altruistically. This surplus is also in the home readily accessible to kids who have no need to try and score something illegal when it’s in their kitchen cabinet.
- At the doctor’s offices you have people relying on the surplus samples to “doctor shop” going from office to office to get meds basically for free.
All in all the Justice Department reports there has been an 80% in prescription drug abuse from 2000 to 2005. Yet in our existing Rx generation, not enough is being done to prevent this issue getting worse. Benchmark Recovery Center is doing what it can to help those who are addicted but more needs to be done eliminate the opportunity so many individuals have when it comes to prescription drug abuse.
What Can Be Done About Prescription Drug Addiction
Based on patterns of abuse and statistics it’s clear that physicians could play a crucial role in dealing with this epidemic by getting the right training. The right training to be prepared to recognize the potential risks for prescribing particular drugs, becoming better evaluators of patient’s tendencies and taking more time to educate people on the right way to take prescription drugs.
Patients might stand to have better, more secure methods for storing these drugs in the home as well as having a full understanding of the medication before they even start on a regular dosage. Also there is a need for a more dedicated enforcement in terms of penalties for selling and/or using prescription drugs.
A combined and concerted from the public and the medical and law enforcement community could potentially help to reduce the astounding high rates of prescription drug abuse. While it may be too late to change the culture that now exists in our society, we can at least take greater efforts to make try and prevent it from getting out of control while helping those who have already been affected. Benchmark Recovery Center is not only vested in being part of that plan, we’re also vested in being part of your solution. Help us help you.