An individual visits a doctor when he/she faces a medical problem. Whether it is a serious or minor one, a person expects their doctor to prescribe certain medications that can help them recover from their illness or injury. The medicines prescribed by a doctor are intended to make a person feel better and get cured. However, when these medications are misused or when individuals begin to abuse these drugs it is known as prescription drug abuse.
Prescription drug abuse is a global issue while approaching epidemic proportions in the United States. The problem arises when an individual uses a drug or a medicine in a manner other than the one for which it was prescribed. Many people become addicted to prescription drugs by taking or being given medications that were prescribed for another person. Medicines that may be addictive should be kept in a place where others, particularly teens, cannot access them.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), some of the commonly abused prescription drugs include opioids, pain relievers and stimulants.
A federal survey released by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) in September 2016 has revealed that approximately half of all Americans take prescription painkillers, tranquilizers, stimulants or sedatives for non-medicinal purposes.
Huge number of Americans misused prescription psychotherapeutic drugs in 2014
A questionnaire designed by the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) was redesigned in 2015 to collect data related to the four categories of prescription psychotherapeutic drugs mainly, pain relievers, tranquilizers, stimulants and sedatives. The respondents were then asked to provide details related to the use of prescription drugs in 2014. This included using the medication for the purposes as prescribed by the doctor as well as their use in non-medicinal ways.
According to the findings of the research it was concluded that approximately 119 million (44.5 percent of the population) Americans in the age group of 12 or above had used prescription psychotherapeutic drugs in 2014, about 97.5 million (36.4 percent) used pain relievers, 39.3 million (14.7 percent) used tranquilizers, 17.2 million (6.4 percent) used stimulants and 18.6 million (6.9 percent) used sedatives in 2014. In the same year, 18.9 million people 12 years and older (7.1 percent) misused prescription psychotherapeutic drugs, which included 12.5 million who misused pain relievers, 6.1 million who misused tranquilizers, 5.3 million who misused stimulants and 1.5 million who misused sedatives. However, it was also found that individuals who used prescription drugs that included 84.1 percent of the population did not misuse them.
Approximately 2.1 million Americans 12 years and older had recently started misusing pain relievers, while 1.4 million had just initiated misusing tranquilizers, 1.3 million were recent initiates for stimulant misuse and 425,000 were recent initiates of sedative misuse. On an average, recent initiates aged 12 to 49 years began misusing prescription drugs in their early to late 20s.
There are numerous factors that cause an individual to misuse a drug. This can be to relieve tension, reduce pain, improve concentration or induce sleep.
If you or a loved one is addicted to prescription drugs and is seeking help, the Prescription Drug Abuse Helpline can assist you in finding the best prescription drug abuse treatment centers in U.S.A. You may call our 24/7 helpline number at 866-450-1557 or chat online with our representatives to know about the most reputable and comprehensive prescription drug abuse treatment centers.