Tag Archives: vicodin

Straight, No Chaser: Prescription Drug Abuse

PrescriptionDrugAbuse_logo

Many times over the years, I’ve had to explain to patients such as chronic sufferers from migraines, low back pain and other conditions that even if they weren’t “drug-seeking,” they still could be addicted to various medications. In the conversation about the drugs that are most frequently abused, once you get past marijuana and alcohol, you’re talking about prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) drugs. Think about it, if you can get a physician to prescribe pain or other medications with mind-altering properties (known as psychoactive medications), it’s a relatively simple way to get a “clean” supply of “high-quality” drugs.
Now if you paid attention to that last sentence, you’ll note the quotes, and perhaps you picked up on the irony. Prescription and OTC drugs are meant to be safer than illicit drugs. However, that’s only true when they are taken exactly as prescribed for the reasons prescribed. When misused or abused, prescription and OTC drugs can be addictive and put abusers at risk for adverse health effects, including overdose and death. In many cases these risks are pronounced when taken at the same time as other drugs or alcohol.
The classes of prescription drugs most commonly abused are the following:

  • Opioid pain relievers, such as Vicodin or Oxycontin
  • Stimulants for treating Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), such as Adderall, Concerta, or Ritalin
  • Central nervous system (CNS) depressants for relieving anxiety, such as Valium or Xanax
  • OTC drugs are cough and cold remedies containing dextromethorphan

What these medications have in common is the mind-altering properties that can be produced when taken other than prescribed (i.e. by a different person and/or in a different dose than prescribed). These can produce effects that some would describe as pleasurable, all the while causing other damage to your body.

 PrescriptionDrugsLarge

What I’d like to accomplish next is to advice you how your children or others with access to your medicine cabinet may be abusing drugs.
Taking a medication prescribed for somebody else. We all have heard time and again to never take medicine prescribed for someone else’s use. Unaware of the dangers of sharing medications in general or pain medications specifically, people often unknowingly participate in this form of abuse by sharing their unused pain relievers with friends and family members. In fact, most teenagers who abuse prescription drugs receive them for free by a friend or relative.
Taking a drug in a higher quantity or in another manner than prescribed. Most prescription drugs are dispensed orally in tablets, but abusers sometimes crush the tablets and snort or inject the powder. This hastens the entry of the drug into the bloodstream and the brain and amplifies its effects. This is dangerous and produces unintended effects, including death.
Taking a drug for another purpose than prescribed. All of the drug types mentioned can produce pleasurable effects at certain quantities, so taking them for the purpose of getting high is one of the main reasons people abuse them. Unfortunately they can also produce deadly effects at certain qualities. A common example is the use of ADHD drugs (e.g. Adderall) to improve students’ academic performance. Although these drugs may boost alertness, there is little evidence they improve cognitive functioning for those without ADHD. There is evidence they produce adverse effects under certain circumstances.

prescription addiction

Finally you should be concerned that prescription opioid abuse has been shown to be a first step to heroin use. Pain medications such as Oxycontin and Vicodin have effects similar to heroin. In three recent studies, nearly half of young people who inject heroin surveyed reported abusing prescription opioids before starting to use heroin. In fact, some individuals reported taking up heroin because it is cheaper and easier to obtain than prescription opioids.
In other words, pay attention to what’s happening with medications in your home and possession.
Feel free to ask your SMA expert consultant any questions you may have on this topic.Take the #72HoursChallenge, and join the community. As a thank you for being a valued subscriber to Straight, No Chaser, we’d like to offer you a complimentary 30-day membership at www.72hourslife.com. Just use the code #NoChaser, and yes, it’s ok if you share!Order your copy of Dr. Sterling’s new books There are 72 Hours in a Day: Using Efficiency to Better Enjoy Every Part of Your Life and The 72 Hours in a Day Workbook: The Journey to The 72 Hours Life in 72 Days at Amazon or at www.72hourslife.com. Receive introductory pricing with orders!
Thanks for liking and following Straight, No Chaser! This public service provides a sample of what http://www.SterlingMedicalAdvice.com (SMA) and 844-SMA-TALK offers. Please share our page with your friends on WordPress, like us on Facebook SterlingMedicalAdvice.com and follow us on Twitter at @asksterlingmd.
Copyright © 2018 · Sterling Initiatives, LLC · Powered by WordPress

Straight, No Chaser: Prescription Drug Abuse

PrescriptionDrugAbuse_logo

Many times over the years, I’ve had to explain to patients such as chronic sufferers from migraines, low back pain and other conditions that even if they weren’t “drug-seeking,” they still could be addicted to various medications. In the conversation about the drugs that are most frequently abused, once you get past marijuana and alcohol, you’re talking about prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) drugs. Think about it, if you can get a physician to prescribe pain or other medications with mind-altering properties (known as psychoactive medications), it’s a relatively simple way to get a “clean” supply of “high-quality” drugs.
Now if you paid attention to that last sentence, you’ll note the quotes, and perhaps you picked up on the irony. Prescription and OTC drugs are meant to be safer than illicit drugs. However, that’s only true when they are taken exactly as prescribed for the reasons prescribed. When misused or abused, prescription and OTC drugs can be addictive and put abusers at risk for adverse health effects, including overdose and death. In many cases these risks are pronounced when taken at the same time as other drugs or alcohol.
The classes of prescription drugs most commonly abused are the following:

  • Opioid pain relievers, such as Vicodin or Oxycontin
  • Stimulants for treating Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), such as Adderall, Concerta, or Ritalin
  • Central nervous system (CNS) depressants for relieving anxiety, such as Valium or Xanax
  • OTC drugs are cough and cold remedies containing dextromethorphan

What these medications have in common is the mind-altering properties that can be produced when taken other than prescribed (i.e. by a different person and/or in a different dose than prescribed). These can produce effects that some would describe as pleasurable, all the while causing other damage to your body.

 PrescriptionDrugsLarge

What I’d like to accomplish next is to advice you how your children or others with access to your medicine cabinet may be abusing drugs.
Taking a medication prescribed for somebody else. We all have heard time and again to never take medicine prescribed for someone else’s use. Unaware of the dangers of sharing medications in general or pain medications specifically, people often unknowingly participate in this form of abuse by sharing their unused pain relievers with friends and family members. In fact, most teenagers who abuse prescription drugs receive them for free by a friend or relative.
Taking a drug in a higher quantity or in another manner than prescribed. Most prescription drugs are dispensed orally in tablets, but abusers sometimes crush the tablets and snort or inject the powder. This hastens the entry of the drug into the bloodstream and the brain and amplifies its effects. This is dangerous and produces unintended effects, including death.
Taking a drug for another purpose than prescribed. All of the drug types mentioned can produce pleasurable effects at certain quantities, so taking them for the purpose of getting high is one of the main reasons people abuse them. Unfortunately they can also produce deadly effects at certain qualities. A common example is the use of ADHD drugs (e.g. Adderall) to improve students’ academic performance. Although these drugs may boost alertness, there is little evidence they improve cognitive functioning for those without ADHD. There is evidence they produce adverse effects under certain circumstances.

prescription addiction

Finally you should be concerned that prescription opioid abuse has been shown to be a first step to heroin use. Pain medications such as Oxycontin and Vicodin have effects similar to heroin. In three recent studies, nearly half of young people who inject heroin surveyed reported abusing prescription opioids before starting to use heroin. In fact, some individuals reported taking up heroin because it is cheaper and easier to obtain than prescription opioids.
In other words, pay attention to what’s happening with medications in your home and possession.
 
Feel free to ask your SMA expert consultant any questions you may have on this topic.
Take the #72HoursChallenge, and join the community. As a thank you for being a valued subscriber to Straight, No Chaser, we’d like to offer you a complimentary 30-day membership at www.72hourslife.com. Just use the code #NoChaser, and yes, it’s ok if you share!
Order your copy of Dr. Sterling’s new books There are 72 Hours in a Day: Using Efficiency to Better Enjoy Every Part of Your Life and The 72 Hours in a Day Workbook: The Journey to The 72 Hours Life in 72 Days at Amazon or at www.72hourslife.com. Receive introductory pricing with orders!
Thanks for liking and following Straight, No Chaser! This public service provides a sample of what http://www.SterlingMedicalAdvice.com (SMA) and 844-SMA-TALK offers. Please share our page with your friends on WordPress, like us on Facebook SterlingMedicalAdvice.com and follow us on Twitter at @asksterlingmd.
Copyright © 2017 · Sterling Initiatives, LLC · Powered by WordPress

Straight, No Chaser: Prescription Drug Abuse

PrescriptionDrugAbuse_logo

Many times over the years, I’ve had to explain to patients such as chronic sufferers from migraines, low back pain and other conditions that even if they weren’t “drug-seeking,” they still could be addicted to various medications. In the conversation about the drugs that are most frequently abused, once you get past marijuana and alcohol, you’re talking about prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) drugs. Think about it, if you can get a physician to prescribe pain or other medications with mind-altering properties (known as psychoactive medications), it’s a relatively simple way to get a “clean” supply of “high-quality” drugs.
Now if you paid attention to that last sentence, you’ll note the quotes, and perhaps you picked up on the irony. Prescription and OTC drugs are meant to be safer than illicit drugs. However, that’s only true when they are taken exactly as prescribed for the reasons prescribed. When misused or abused, prescription and OTC drugs can be addictive and put abusers at risk for adverse health effects, including overdose and death. In many cases these risks are pronounced when taken at the same time as other drugs or alcohol.
The classes of prescription drugs most commonly abused are the following:

  • Opioid pain relievers, such as Vicodin or Oxycontin
  • Stimulants for treating Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), such as Adderall, Concerta, or Ritalin
  • Central nervous system (CNS) depressants for relieving anxiety, such as Valium or Xanax
  • OTC drugs are cough and cold remedies containing dextromethorphan

What these medications have in common is the mind-altering properties that can be produced when taken other than prescribed (i.e. by a different person and/or in a different dose than prescribed). These can produce effects that some would describe as pleasurable, all the while causing other damage to your body.

 PrescriptionDrugsLarge

What I’d like to accomplish next is to advice you how your children or others with access to your medicine cabinet may be abusing drugs.
Taking a medication prescribed for somebody else. We all have heard time and again to never take medicine prescribed for someone else’s use. Unaware of the dangers of sharing medications in general or pain medications specifically, people often unknowingly participate in this form of abuse by sharing their unused pain relievers with friends and family members. In fact, most teenagers who abuse prescription drugs receive them for free by a friend or relative.
Taking a drug in a higher quantity or in another manner than prescribed. Most prescription drugs are dispensed orally in tablets, but abusers sometimes crush the tablets and snort or inject the powder. This hastens the entry of the drug into the bloodstream and the brain and amplifies its effects. This is dangerous and produces unintended effects, including death.
Taking a drug for another purpose than prescribed. All of the drug types mentioned can produce pleasurable effects at certain quantities, so taking them for the purpose of getting high is one of the main reasons people abuse them. Unfortunately they can also produce deadly effects at certain qualities. A common example is the use of ADHD drugs (e.g. Adderall) to improve students’ academic performance. Although these drugs may boost alertness, there is little evidence they improve cognitive functioning for those without ADHD. There is evidence they produce adverse effects under certain circumstances.

prescription addiction

Finally you should be concerned that prescription opioid abuse has been shown to be a first step to heroin use. Pain medications such as Oxycontin and Vicodin have effects similar to heroin. In three recent studies, nearly half of young people who inject heroin surveyed reported abusing prescription opioids before starting to use heroin. In fact, some individuals reported taking up heroin because it is cheaper and easier to obtain than prescription opioids.
In other words, pay attention to what’s happening with medications in your home and possession.
Feel free to ask any questions you may have on this topic.
Order your copy of Dr. Sterling’s new book Behind The Curtain: A Peek at Life from within the ER at jeffreysterlingbooks.com, iTunes, Amazon, Barnes and Nobles and wherever books are sold.
Thanks for liking and following Straight, No Chaser! This public service provides a sample of what http://www.SterlingMedicalAdvice.com (SMA) and 844-SMA-TALK offers. Please share our page with your friends on WordPress, like us on Facebook SterlingMedicalAdvice.com and follow us on Twitter at @asksterlingmd.
Copyright © 2016 · Sterling Initiatives, LLC · Powered by WordPress
 

Straight, No Chaser: Prescription Pain Killer (Opioid) Abuse

opioid-withdrawal-symptoms-1

One of the more challenging aspects of emergency medicine is pain management. Emergency departments are filled with patients suffering from terminal and chronic diseases, including cancer, lupus and sickle cell anemia. Unfortunately they are also frequented by drug-seeking patients with manufactured complaints meant to obtain prescription pain medications, particularly opioids.

 opioid30p

Opioids are among the strongest medications that will be prescribed by your physician. You know these drugs well. They include codeine, hydrocodone (e.g., Vicodin), morphine and oxycodone (e.g. OxyContin and Percocet). Other opioids include remedies for cough and diarrhea, including codeine preparations and diphenoxylate (Lomotil), respectively.

 opioid increase

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) notes marked increases in unintentional poisoning deaths over the last 25 years. Opioid pain medication abuse, often in combination with alcohol or other medications are a major reason for this increase. You may or may not be surprised to know that approximately 10% of high school seniors have used opioids in the last year for non-medical purposes. At the other end of the age spectrum, elderly patients prescribed these medicines for various reasons often find their supplies pilfered.

opioid HS students

You know at least half of the reason why, based on the pleasurable acute effects of opiates. Acute effects of opioids involve relieving pain by dulling the intensity of pain signals headed toward the brain (according to our brains, that tree in the forest with no one around doesn’t make a sound). Basically, if the brain doesn’t receive the signals coming from painful stimuli, you don’t know you’re having pain. Opioids also stimulate pleasure centers within the brain, additionally helping us to ignore sensations of pain. Other acute effects include nausea, drowsiness and constipation.
The other half of the story regarding acute effects of opiates often involve the consequences of snorting or injecting medications meant to be taken orally, or misusing/abusing prescribed medication even if taken orally. Opioids also lead to depressed breathing (respirations), which facilitates coma and death – particularly when used while drinking alcohol.
Long-term effects of opioids are often not thought of by those looking for a high, but they are devastating. In addition to developing tolerance (decreasing effects if taking the same dose over time) and addiction (cravings and inability to function without ongoing drug use), opioids are associated with spontaneous abortions and births of low birth weight babies.

rehabilitation

One of the reasons to avoid getting started down the road of becoming addicted to opioids is ending the addiction is difficult. The withdrawal syndrome includes vomiting, diarrhea, involvement leg movements, restlessness, insomnia, muscle and bone pain and cold flashes. Many individuals attempting to end addiction find themselves relapsing due to the severity of withdrawal symptoms. That said, good treatment options exist for combatting opioid addiction. These include both medications and behavioral therapies that have been proven effective.
There is a time and place for strong pain management. When this is the case, get the medicine you need. Just be aware that there’s a very slippery slope involved with opioids, and a level of caution should be applied when deciding to take pain medications. Feel free to contact your SMA expert consultant for any questions you may have on this topic.
Thanks for liking and following Straight, No Chaser! This public service provides a sample of what 844-SMA-TALK and http://www.SterlingMedicalAdvice.com (SMA) offers. Please share our page with your friends on WordPress, Facebook @ SterlingMedicalAdvice.com and Twitter at @asksterlingmd.
Copyright © 2014 · Sterling Initiatives, LLC · Powered by WordPress.

Straight, No Chaser: Prescription Drug Abuse

PrescriptionDrugAbuse_logo

Many times over the years, I’ve had to explain to patients such as chronic sufferers from migraines, low back pain and other conditions that even if they weren’t “drug-seeking,” they still could be addicted to various medications. In the conversation about the drugs that are most frequently abused, once you get past marijuana and alcohol, you’re talking about prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) drugs. Think about it, if you can get a physician to prescribe pain or other medications with mind-altering properties (known as psychoactive medications), it’s a relatively simple way to get a “clean” supply of “high-quality” drugs.
Now if you paid attention to that last sentence, you’ll note the quotes, and perhaps you picked up on the irony. Prescription and OTC drugs are meant to be safer than illicit drugs. However, that’s only true when they are taken exactly as prescribed for the reasons prescribed. When misused or abused, prescription and OTC drugs can be addictive and put abusers at risk for adverse health effects, including overdose and death. In many cases these risks are pronounced when taken at the same time as other drugs or alcohol.
The classes of prescription drugs most commonly abused are the following:

  • Opioid pain relievers, such as Vicodin or Oxycontin
  • Stimulants for treating Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), such as Adderall, Concerta, or Ritalin
  • Central nervous system (CNS) depressants for relieving anxiety, such as Valium or Xanax
  • OTC drugs are cough and cold remedies containing dextromethorphan

What these medications have in common is the mind-altering properties that can be produced when taken other than prescribed (i.e. by a different person and/or in a different dose than prescribed). These can produce effects that some would describe as pleasurable, all the while causing other damage to your body.

 PrescriptionDrugsLarge

What I’d like to accomplish next is to advice you how your children or others with access to your medicine cabinet may be abusing drugs.
Taking a medication prescribed for somebody else. We all have heard time and again to never take medicine prescribed for someone else’s use. Unaware of the dangers of sharing medications in general or pain medications specifically, people often unknowingly participate in this form of abuse by sharing their unused pain relievers with friends and family members. In fact, most teenagers who abuse prescription drugs receive them for free by a friend or relative.
Taking a drug in a higher quantity or in another manner than prescribed. Most prescription drugs are dispensed orally in tablets, but abusers sometimes crush the tablets and snort or inject the powder. This hastens the entry of the drug into the bloodstream and the brain and amplifies its effects. This is dangerous and produces unintended effects, including death.
Taking a drug for another purpose than prescribed. All of the drug types mentioned can produce pleasurable effects at certain quantities, so taking them for the purpose of getting high is one of the main reasons people abuse them. Unfortunately they can also produce deadly effects at certain qualities. A common example is the use of ADHD drugs (e.g. Adderall) to improve students’ academic performance. Although these drugs may boost alertness, there is little evidence they improve cognitive functioning for those without ADHD. There is evidence they produce adverse effects under certain circumstances.

prescription addiction

Finally you should be concerned that prescription opioid abuse has been shown to be a first step to heroin use. Pain medications such as Oxycontin and Vicodin have effects similar to heroin. In three recent studies, nearly half of young people who inject heroin surveyed reported abusing prescription opioids before starting to use heroin. In fact, some individuals reported taking up heroin because it is cheaper and easier to obtain than prescription opioids.
In other words, pay attention to what’s happening with medications in your home and possession.
Feel free to contact your SMA expert consultant for any questions you may have on this topic.
Thanks for liking and following Straight, No Chaser! This public service provides a sample of what 844-SMA-TALK and http://www.SterlingMedicalAdvice.com (SMA) offers. Please share our page with your friends on WordPress, Facebook @ SterlingMedicalAdvice.com and Twitter at @asksterlingmd.
Copyright © 2014 · Sterling Initiatives, LLC · Powered by WordPress.