Thanks to the internet, everyone is an expert these days, but could a nation of experts lead to a nation of prescription drug addicts? We all have everything we need to know at our fingertips. The clinical staff at One80Center has seen such beliefs lead directly to tragedies that could have been avoided. However, Google is our God, and we all seem to believe the right facts are a simple keystroke away from being realized:
Who wrote The Beautiful and Damned? F. Scott Fitzgerald post Gatsby. How many pints in a liter? 2.11337642, of course. Is it okay to take OxyContin on an empty stomach? Sure it is if you know the dosage. Will I become addicted if I take one? Of course not. It takes time to develop an addiction. Unfortunately, such reassuring answers are often incorrect and downright dangerous. Google is not licensed as a medical provider, and we should not fool ourselves in terms of the quality of the information we receive when we search. It is inconsistent at best.
Experts or Prescription Drug Addicts?
Today, 37 percent of American adults at least occasionally use the Internet to investigate the possible effects of a drug, says a new survey from The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion. Six percent admit they always seek health advice online, where professionals and nonprofessionals dispense advice at will. The Internet’s ability to equalize science and speculation makes the clinical staff at One80Center very nervous. Consumers who want to find quality information online can weed out the drug promoters and other weak sources by asking specific questions.
The National Institutes of Health suggests the following questions:
Is it easy to see who pays for and is responsible for the health-related website and its information? Is the website connected to a public entity or a private company? Is the website promoting a certain lifestyle or philosophy? What is the website’s purpose? If the given information isn’t written by the website creator, is the original source clearly identified?
The risks are heightened when the patient is surfing for information concerning prescription medications. When taken improperly, a medication’s molecular structure can become altered and therefore ineffective or dangerous. Kids often surf the web to confirm that it is okay to try and experiment with prescription drugs. The bad results can range from the deadly to the addictive.
Avoid international sites offering deals on prescription drugs. Some websites will feature a seal of approval from Verified Internet Pharmacy Practice Sites, or VIPPS. A site also should clearly state privacy and security policies. If the site doesn’t include a physical address and phone number, avoid it altogether.
Prescription-level drugs never should be purchased if they don’t require U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval, or if the online pharmacy doesn’t ask for proof of a written prescription for an authorized health professional. Doing so is illegal and a prescription for disaster online pharmacies such as the massive mail-order company Medco provide one-to-one pharmacy consultations over the phone. And full disclosure is always the way to go.
A Nation of Prescription Drug Addicts
Whatever you do, don’t try to go it alone, experts say. Prescription drugs should not be abused and should not become an avenue for becoming a prescription drug addict. A nation of experts can quickly become a nation of addicts. If you want to learn about prescription drugs before a talk with a doctor, here are some consumer websites offering basic information.
One of the golden rules of the clinical staff at One80Center is embracing safety before taking any risks. If you make a mistake with prescription drugs, the results could be fatal. Be safe first, be smart and trust professionals with the experience and expertise you need to avoid unnecessary risks. For help, please contact One80Center by calling toll free 888.593.2301.
Los Angeles Authorities Raid And Shut Down 4 San Fernando Valley Pill Mill Medical Clinics For Dealing Oxycontin And Prescription Drugs
Before the holiday season, One80Center notes and endorses the proactive raids and closures of 4 San Fernando Valley pill mill medical clinics by Los Angeles law enforcement officials and federal authorities. Suspected of catering to addicts seeking heroin-like painkillers like OxyContin and Vicodin as well as other prescription drugs, the closures of the clinics is definitely a step in the right direction. It is frightening, however, to learn that the pill model of drug distribution where legal facilities are designed as covers for illegal activities is becoming a prevalent reality in Southern California.
The investigation into the clinics was prompted by the apparent overdose death of a Ventura County man last month, officials said. Authorities closed the San Fernando Valley pill mill clinics — three in Reseda and one in Van Nuys — because of alleged labor code violations. The code violations, however, opened the door to a greater investigation. Searching the Encino home of the manager of two of the clinics, Los Angeles sheriff deputies found $300,000 in cash and another $300,000 worth of the powerful prescription painkiller OxyContin. The clinic manager, identified as Anush Davtyan, was arrested and is suspected of being involved in a scheme to sell the medication, which can fetch $30 to $80 a pill, on the black market.
The clinics employed eight physicians and physician’s assistants at various times. What is so alarming is that two of the physician names continued to be used to write prescriptions after the doctors had died. Prescriptions and pharmacy bottles from the clinics have been found on drug suspects arrested in Arizona, Washington and several other states, drawing the scrutiny of investigators. Pharmacies in several states also made complaints about the quantities of addictive and dangerous drugs contained in prescriptions from the clinics, and some big pharmacy chains made the decision not to honor such prescriptions from the San Fernando Valley pill mill medical offices.
After a 51-year-old Ventura man overdosed with a prescription pill bottle of the powerful painkiller OxyContin in his pocket, the investigation of the 4 San Fernando Valley pill mill medical offices began. The San Fernando Valley pill mill clinics are now the focus of ongoing investigations by several agencies, including the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and the Medicare Office of Inspector General. Patient records and computers were seized during the raids at all three clinics. As a result, the prosecutions are believed to be in excellent shape with an exceeding amount of incriminating evidence in the hands of the authorities. One80Center hopes such prosecutions not only are successful, but lead to a renewed focus on illegal distribution and abuse of prescription drugs in Southern California. After all, the pill mills are not an exception to the rule, but a symptom of a greater plague raging in the hearts of the city, the state and the country as a whole.
Los Angeles Doctor Accused of Murder For Repeatedly Prescribing Prescription Painkillers And Ignoring Signs Of Drug Addiction To Three Drug-Seeking Young Men Who Overdosed
After prescribing narcotic painkillers to three patients who later died from overdoses, Dr. Hsiu-Ying Tseng is going to be tried for murder. Witnesses at preliminary hearings said the three patients showed obvious “red flags” they were abusing drugs. ONE80CENTER believes it is the role of the physician to follow their Hippocratic oath when prescribing potentially dangerous prescription drugs and narcotic-based painkillers.
27,000 Prescriptions for Painkillers
Authorities allege she wrote more than 27,000 prescriptions over a three-year period. She is among only a handful of doctors nationwide to be charged with murder related to prescription drugs. Dr. Walter Strauser, a San Diego physician certified in pain medicine, said Hsiu-Ying “Lisa” Tseng failed to properly examine her patients, many of whom displayed obvious signs of addiction problems, such as scars from repeated injections with hypodermic needles. According to the pain medicine expert, Tseng “improperly dosed” large quantities of painkillers and anti-anxiety drugs to drug-seeking young people with questionable complaints of pain.
The Los Angeles district attorney charged Tseng with three counts of second-degree murder in the deaths of three men, all in their 20s, who died in 2009. Tseng is charged in connection with the deaths of Vu Nguyen, 28, of Lake Forest; Steven Ogle, 25, of Palm Desert; and Joey Rovero, 21, an Arizona State University student from San Ramon, east of San Francisco. She also is charged with 20 felony counts of prescribing drugs to people with no legitimate need for the medications and one count of prescribing drugs using fraud. She has pleaded not guilty to all charges. She is charged with second-degree murder and could be sentenced to 45 years to life in prison if convicted.
The charges against Tseng, who was arrested March 1, represent a rare attempt to hold a physician criminally liable for patients’ deaths. Legal experts say the prosecutors’ burden is high and such cases are difficult to prove. Prosecutors have passed along more than 15,000 pages of documents to Tseng’s attorneys for review and have a list of more than 80 witnesses who could be called to testify, including medical experts, members of Tseng’s staff and families of the patients who died, said Deputy Dist. Atty. John Niedermann.
More Overdoses Beyond The Three Deaths In The Indictment
Prosecutors also have named three other patients from Orange County under Tseng’s care who died of overdoses in 2007 and 2008 but for whose deaths she has not been charged. Those patients were Matthew Stavron, 24; Naythan Kenney, 34; and Ryan Latham, 21. Prosecutors plan to use information regarding those deaths as evidence that Tseng knew patients were dying under her care. Tseng showed a “conscious disregard for human life, with which she continued, unabated, to prescribe in the same manner for years,” Deputy Dist. Atty. Grace Rai said.
Dr. Tseng has been in custody since her arrest in March. She is being held on $3 million bail in spite of her attorneys’ previous arguments that she is a mother of small children who has ties to her community. The judge refused to reduce her bail at that time. Although ONE80CENTER understands that the charges seem harsh and the treatment extreme, the families of the three young men who overdosed from the painkillers fervently disagree. They believe along with the clinical staff of ONE80CENTER that it is unconscionable for a doctor to repeatedly profit off of the addictions of drug-seeking youth while flagrantly ignoring the danger signs of addiction and the potential for overdose from painkillers. Given the history presented and the number of deaths, Dr. Tseng is getting exactly what she now deserves.
From The Huffington Post: Celebrity Overdoses Highlight Prescription Drug Epidemic – Why Do We Need High Profile Deaths To Wake America Up?
Here is an article excerpted from a longer piece in The Huffington Post about the prescription drug epidemic. ONE80CENTER always avoid the tabloid approach to celebrity overdoses, and we respect the privacy of people across the board. Nevertheless, it is time for the rash of celebrity overdoses on account of prescription drug addiction and abuse to truly raise awareness across the nation and open the eyes of the public to this raging epidemic. It is not getting any better… it is only getting worse and the time for prevention is now!
Excerpts from the Huffington Post:
On Feb. 11, 2012, on the eve of the Grammy Awards, Whitney Houston fell asleep in a bathtub at the Beverly Hilton hotel in Los Angeles and never woke up… it’s been well established that the 48-year-old singer ingested a cocktail of cocaine and prescription drugs before taking her final breath. Most notably, the toxicology report revealed that a ”plethora of prescription medication bottles” had been littered across her hotel room — 12 in total, prescribed by five different doctors. Among the drugs discovered were the anti-anxiety medication Xanax and the muscle relaxant Flexeril…
In the past decade, Heath Ledger, Brittany Murphy, Anna Nicole Smith and Michael Jackson were just four of the most famous stars to overdose on legal medication.
Their deaths reflect a larger wave of prescription drug abuse across the United States. .. Recent studies show that, in 2010, 2.4 million people age 12 or older began using prescription drugs for non-medical reasons. That’s 6,600 persons a day.
According to a report from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, overdoses from prescription drug medication have tripled in the past decade, up to 15,000 and more than the toll from cocaine and heroin combined… There are no illegal cartels profiting from the prescription drug epidemic. IA pharmacy system lacking centralized tracking (so that an addict may be able to recycle the same prescription to obtain hundreds of pills a month) and a pharmaceutical industry that spends millions lobbying against regulations that could squeeze their bottom line. And then there are the doctors…
Americans gained insight into the world of such excessively generous medical professionals during the trial of Dr. Conrad Murray, Michael Jackson’s personal physician, who allegedly administered a fatal dose of the anesthetic propofol to the late pop star in June 2009. Two years after Jackson died, Murray was convicted of involuntary manslaughter and sentenced to four years in prison by the Superior Court of Los Angeles County. Portrayal of Murray throughout the six-week trial ranged from a sympathetic doctor who cured the troubled singer of his much-maligned insomnia to an incompetent professional who was a danger to society…
Since there’s little chance that doctors will suddenly start prescribing more responsibly or that the nation’s top 50 pharmaceutical companies will stop spending a chunk of their $600 billion in annual profits on lobbying, the best weapons against addiction are treatment for those who have already succumbed — and education for everybody else.
Prescription Drug Epidemic – Enough is Enough!
Enough is enough! At ONE80CENTER, we are sick and tired of seeing good people die for the wrong reasons, for stupid reasons as their lives are hollowed out into mere shadows by prescription drug addiction, leaving behind a wasteland of scarred family members and devastated children. Why do so many of us seem to need high profile tragedies in order to capture our attention and generate a little fire in our bellies? How many more senseless tabloid headlines will it take before the cry of “Enough is Enough” is heard across this country?
As we enter into the heart of the Presidential election, why do we hear nothing about the prescription drug epidemic from either campaign? Why do both the Republicans and the Democrats choose to ignore this growing problem that is affecting every community in America? Abortion will be debated left and right, as it is every election cycle along with all of the other hot button issues, but addiction will be shunted aside once again and ignored. Isn’t it time that addiction and the need for recovery becomes a central issue in the debate for the future health and well-being of this country?
If this plea sounds passionate and intense, it is because we are exposed at ONE80CENTER to the results of the damage being done every day by the prescription drug epidemic. To raise the stakes for money spent on prevention, education and treatment, no one else should have to die and there don’t need to be any more tabloid headlines or TMZ reports. Instead, we simply have to face the facts that if we do not do something, the prescription drug epidemic is only going to get worse.
A Prescription Drug Not Designed To Treat Insomnia, Klonopin, a brand name of Clonazepam, Leads To Dependence And Serious Side Effects As Shown In Salon Article
In a powerful personal piece about her troubles with Klonopin and zombie-like side effects that drained her creativity, Diana Spechler uncovers how prescription drugs can be misprescribed. The Clinical Staff at ONE80CENTER believes it is important to prescribe prescription drugs with caution and as they are intended in order to avoid such negative outcome. Klonopin, a popular brand name of the benzodiazepine Clonazepam, was not originally designed as a treatment for insomnia. Although benzodiazepines, or benzos as users and abusers know them, does enhance naturally occurring chemicals in the brain that promote sleep, it also has countless side effects and extreme addictive properties.
Often Misprescribed, Klonopin Side Effects
Like Valium and Xanax, Klonopin often is used to treat anti-anxiety disorders, panic attacks and certain forms of epilepsy. Although the FDA has not approved clonazepam for the treatment of insomnia, countless doctors prescribe it off-label to treat clients and patients complaining of an inability to sleep. The side effects of Klonopin include behavioral problems, lack of muscular coordination, and a number of other side effects that manifest in rare cases. There is a strong risk of dependency, abuse and addiction with benzos. In addition, Klonopin reacts poorly with a number of over-the-counter medications and even herbal remedies. The prescription drug has a history of being particularly deadly when combined with alcohol.
Diane Spechler And Klonopin On Salon
To read the entire article by Spechler on the Salon site, please click on this link — http://www.salon.com/2012/07/28/my_klonopin_fog/
Suffering from insomnia for countless years, Spechler was prescribed Klonopin by her therapist. At first, she believed the drug was a miracle answer to her insomnia. Spechler writes:
If the middle of the night had once been a storm cloud, it was now a fluffy cumulus. Daytime, too, felt dreamy and tranquil. “I love Klonopin!” I told everyone I knew. Like a new convert, I tuned out the naysayers, who decried benzos as addictive. “I’m on a minuscule dose,” I assured them. I kept saying, “It’s changed my whole life.”
But Spechler quickly discovered a number of adverse side effects as she began to take the prescription drug on a regular basis. Her emotions narrowed, her personality became muted, and her creativity shriveled. A professional writer, Spechler describes what happened in an evocative voice that is both engaging and descriptive. She experienced the worse writer’s block of her life and became depressed and embarrassed. When she did write, the results were second-rate as though her creativity has been drained away.
Luckily, Spechler was able to break out of the zombie-like side effects and throw away her pills before experiencing extreme dependence. Afterwards, she looked into the causes behind what happened to her and was surprised by what she found. She writes:
In retrospect, I should have done more research. Well-known benzo side effects include “emotional clouding” and “loss of creativity,” which can be distressing whether someone wants to make art or not. “I have not been able to feel anything … in three years. I can’t even cry right,” wrote one member of BenzoBuddies Community Forum, an online group for people withdrawing from benzodiazepines.
ONE80CENTER is happy that Spechler found freedom from Klonopin before her problem spiraled out of control into actual dependence, abuse or addiction. If you or a loved one is having problems with Klonopin, the clinical staff at ONE80CENTER has the experience and the expertise to provide a medically monitored detox and a road to long-term sustainable recovery. To learn more, please call (888) 588-4180 for help and a free consultation.
From New York To California, the National Epidemic Of Prescription Drug Dependence, Prescription Drug Abuse And Prescription Drug Addiction
Prescription drug dependence, prescription drug abuse, prescription drug addiction are all different sides of a new American plague. Since I have Google Alerts for all of these terms and many more, every day I see articles pouring forth from all over the country, from New to California and everywhere in between, reporting on the damage done and the toll taken by the abuse of prescription drugs. It does matter whether it is college students buying Adderall in the library to study all night long or high school students stealing Vicodin and Xanax from their parent’s medicine cabinets, or drug addicts scoring Oxycontin tablets on the street to crush and snort or shoot, the problem is out of control and just getting worse. ONE80CENTER is on the front lines of the battle, and we are doing best to stem the tide of destruction and devastation. But nothing seems to work.
The Plague Begins With Prescription Drug Dependence
For every person we help to detox and eventually discover the path of long-term recovery, five more are experimenting on the weekend, dancing with prescription drug dependence. Five more are using every week as their prescription drug dependence becomes prescription drug abuse. And even five more are finding their prescription drug abuse spiraling into the slavery of prescription drug addiction as they break the law and do bad things they never would have imagined possible before to get their scripts filled.
The clinical staff at ONE80CENTER are experienced professionals, respected in their fields, and they want you to know that this problem that begins with prescription drug dependence is not being overly exaggerated or blown out of proportion. It is literally a plague that is hitting all level of American society, regardless of race, class, sexual orientation, gender, age and on and on. Choose any group, do the research on Google, and you will see how endemic and terrifying the prescription drug abuse problem has become. The prescription medication plague is being reported in papers all over the country
It is easy to ignore the first touches of prescription drug dependence. You can shake your head and shrug your shoulders in the face of prescription drug abuse. But there is no turning away from the horrors that follow in the devastating path of prescription drug addiction. Do any of you actually not know a friend or acquaintance who is experiencing or has experienced problems with prescription drugs? Whether it is a college student who thinks she has to take Adderall to keep up with the curve or a stay-at-home mom popping Xanax to deal with the kids or a Wall Street banker snorting Oxycontin to take the edge off after another stressful day, problems with prescription drugs have almost become the norm as opposed to the exception.
In fact, these prescription drug problems are so much more common now than illegal drug problems because the fact that they are theoretically legal creates a false sense of acceptance. After all, even if the circumstances become more and more shady, they were prescribed by a doctor and dispensed by a pharmacy. How dangerous could they really be? If you have a loved one or a friend, a family member or a co-worker with a prescription drug problem, take action before the prescription drug dependence becomes abuse and then addiction. The later you take action, the harder the problem becomes to overcome.
Mind you, at ONE80CENTER, we have seen the most extreme addicts find their authentic path of recovery through our individualized program. If you need help or someone you know needs help, do not stick your head in the sand and act like an ostrich, hoping it will all just go away. From personal experience and professional expertise, we know this is one of the most dangerous fallacies in the world. It literally will lead to jails, institutions and death. Before such disaster strikes, please take the time to contact the Clinical Experts at ONE80CENTER and reach out for help.
No Prescriptions Needed: How The Internet Has Changed The Landscape Of Buying Dangerous Prescription Drugs
The Internet has made it ridiculously easy for anyone with a credit card, including young kids, to buy prescription medications from pharmacies overseas without a prescription. A recent survey found that 15% of adults questioned had bought prescription drugs online without a prescription. ONE80CENTER has seen the revolution in the drug market in the last 20 years on account of the web. It has transformed the way many of us operate almost beyond recognition. We must realize that our families are at greater risk than ever. With serious prescription drugs like Valium and Ritalin available without a prescription, the risk of the abuse of prescription drugs and addiction to prescription drugs is skyrocketing.
Danger Of Buying Prescription Drugs Online
It is now possible to purchase pretty much any psychiatric medication online without a prescription. Beyond the drug abuse effects, it is so dangerous because patients are buying nobody-knows-quite-what medication from nobody-knows-quite-where. Such health risks are neither advisable nor is it legal. There is nothing to guarantee that the generic meds you buy online from getanythingyouwant.com contain the correct ingredients. Even if they do, the lack of medical monitoring, the potential for adverse interactions with other medications, can lead to serious and even fatal consequences.
A study published by the Nuffield Council on Bioethics in 2010 makes for thought-provoking reading. It says that while there are plenty of reputable online pharmacies that require a prescription to dispense prescription-only medication, the reality is that it has become extremely easy for anyone with a credit card to buy generic or regular meds from pharmacies overseas. The extent of the practice is difficult to ascertain precisely because, together with cost and convenience, the privacy of it is what attracts so many people.
15% of Adults Have Bought Prescription Drugs Without A Prescription
A recent survey by the Royal Pharmaceutical Society and others, found that 15% of adults questioned had bought prescription-only medicine online without a prescription. Two of the top four medications available were sold Valium and Ritalin. Although it harder to find prescription painkillers online, both Benzodiazepines like Valium and Speed Accelerants like Ritalin are extremely addictive and dangerous
ONE80CENTER believes that regulation is important, but not easy and quite a long ways away from being effective. In practice, what is essential is education and prevention by letting young people and our families understand fully the consequences involved. Regulation can be very hard to enforce when websites and suppliers are located overseas, can appear or disappear in an instant and can move jurisdiction at will. It is the reluctance of health professionals and doctors to prescribe certain medications that is the most common reason for people to buy online. Such reluctance may be perfectly valid on account of addictive qualities and abusive tendencies, but we cannot ignore the fact that the world has changed. The new reality is that we need to acknowledge and work with within the current environment that the Internet has created.
Quitting Drinking On Your Own Is Dangerous, Leading To Intensified Anxiety And Increased Self-Medication
Alcohol is a coping agent, and it is often connected to the anxiety experienced by an individual. Anxiety is an everyday companion for tons of people in our fast-paced, information-driven world of technology, static and noise. Women in particular exhibit higher rates of anxiety according to hospital admissions for panic attack. More than twice as many women are admitted to hospitals for anxiety disorders when compared to the admission rates of men. What is incredible is how many of these patients turn out to be cross-addicted, abusing both alcohol and anxiety drugs in the form of benzodiazepines like Valium and Xanax. At ONE80CENTER, our clinical staff’s goal is to address the underlying co-occurring anxiety disorder of the client while giving them freedom from self-medication and the abuse of alcohol.
Quitting Drinking On Your Own Can Increase Anxiety
If you live in a constant state of anxiety, ONE80CENTER understands how difficult your daily life can be when the panic hits. Did you know that alcohol withdrawal could turn an everyday experience of anxiety into a full-blown panic attack? If you have problem with alcohol and you are worried about your drinking, you should definitely do everything you can to stop. We want you to discover the freedom of recovery, but we want to ensure your health as well. We don’t want an attempt to give up alcohol to lead to greater self-medication, addiction, and even possible overdose. We want you to be safe and your health to be protected.
Being caught between dual problems of alcohol abuse and prescription pill self-medication to deal with an underlying anxiety condition is like being caught in a vise. The more you try to deal with one problem, the worse the other problem gets. It seems like there is no way to find the comfort and piece you experienced in the good old days. Luckily, this dark feeling is not correct, and it is a result of your disease of perception. With help, you can find the peace you desire.
Self-Medication Is Not The Answer To Increased Anxiety Problems
Yes, it is true that giving up alcohol and prescription medications after you have become dependent on them, both physically and psychologically, can be extremely difficult. But it can be done, and the clinical team at ONE80CENTER are experts at helping our clients comfortably manage the process of detox in a safe and supportive environment. Not only do we want you to get back on your feet, feeling rested and secure. Through our supportive community and positive groups and therapeutic tools, we will help build the inner strength to avoid going back into the shivering darkness when you leave our treatment center. In addition, once you become part of our community, you know that the talented staff at and alumni of ONE80CENTER will always be available to help you handle any speed bumps on the road of recovery.
Enough Is Enough: Prescription Drug Substance Abuse Disorders Co-Occurring With Alcoholism Doing Too Much Damage Today
At ONECENTER, the dedicated staff and clinical team are tired of seeing so many good people destroy their lives and die tragic deaths on account of co-occurring disorders like mixing alcoholism with prescription drugs, particularly benzodiazepines like Valium, Xanax, and Ativan and painkillers like OxyContin and Oxycodone. When will we finally learn from experience that mixing prescription drugs and alcohol is a fatal combination? How many people do we have to lose to this deadly cocktail before we realize that enough is enough?
Co-Occurring Disorders And Combined Drug Intoxication (CDI)
Officially it is called Combined drug intoxication (CDI), also known as multiple drug intake (MDI) or lethal polydrug/polypharmacy intoxication. Traditionally, co-occurring disorders refer to a mental disorder side-by-side with prescription drug addiction and/or alcoholism. Since both alcoholism and drug addiction have been classified as diseases, co-addiction is now a co-occurring disorder as well. Whatever you want to designate the problem, ONE80CENTER are experts at providing the best in treatment services and effective care.
To this combination of alcoholism and drug addiction that is seen every day in rehabs and treatment centers, the world has lost so many celebrities and cultural giants. Such a deadly mixture killed rock icons like Jimi Hendrix (alcohol and barbiturates) and Elvis Presley (ten prescription drugs and alcohol) as well as contemporary legends like Anna Nicole Smith (vodka and four benzodiazepines: Klonopin, Ativan, Sera, and Valium), and Heath Ledger (oxycodone, hydrocodone, diazepam, alprazolam, doxylamine and mixed drinks).
None of the above information is some great mystery or revelation. ONE80CENTER always protects the privacy and anonymity of our clients and community. All of these statistics can be found in Wikipedia. The relevant point is the list literally could go on and on. Since the human body so quickly processes alcohol, it rarely turns up in the toxicology reports of autopsies. But drinking is almost always a factor. In addition, both the drug addiction and the drinking tend to be used as a form of self-medication to address underlying co-occurring mental problems and psychological disorders
Co-occurring as disorders, often used as a form of alternative medication for a mental problem or emotional issue like anxiety, depression and borderline tendencies, alcoholism and substance abuse tend to go hand-in-hand. In the past, the substance abuse disorders tended to deal primarily with illegal drugs like heroin and cocaine. Although ONE80CENTER still treats its fare share of patients with illegal drug addictions, it is no longer the dominant archetype. Since so many of the substance abuse disorders now involve prescription medication, it all seems terribly legal. This is what we are most likely to hear in the process of an addict’s rationalization.
The Warped Perception Of Prescription Drug Addicted Alcoholics
“Yeah, I’m taking a bunch of pills but I have prescriptions for them. What’s the big deal if I am having a drink here and there as well? I think everyone should just get off my back. It’s not like I’m doing anything wrong or breaking the law. I know my limits, I just screwed-up a couple of times. Of course, I like to drink to take the edge off. Who doesn’t need a little help to deal with all the financial stress these days? With all the tabloid crap and bullshit out there, who wouldn’t want to have a few drinks with the boys before going home or maybe a bottle of wine at dinner? And, okay, sure I use something in the morning to get the day off with a pop, and maybe I take a pill or two at the office to keep things cool and collected, and a few at night to help me get to sleep. But, come on now, I’m not an addict or an alcoholic. I don’t have a serious problem. Isn’t that the way things are? Isn’t that what everyone does to get by?”
Okay, the little speech above is filled with a thousand and one clichés, but we literally experience them all the time. And we really want to get our point across and help you realize what is going on out there. We will deliver you in the coming months a series of articles and blogs that show the medical establishment’s perspective on this problem and how close it is to all the cutting edge addiction research of the day. To begin with, we took the gloves off and got down to the proverbial brass tacks. Alcoholism and addiction are cunning, baffling and powerful diseases. We are tired of going to funerals and watching parents bury their children and beautiful lives being wasted.
The Plague Of Co-Occurring Substance Abuse Disorders Worsening
Today we make the choice to put our foot down and say enough is enough. This is no longer a minor problem to push into the back of the newspapers or to be discussed only in obscure online forums, which, of course, we naturally do support and value. However, it should not take the death of a celebrity from co-occurring prescription drug and alcohol abuse to place this problem on the front page of our lives. Our country literally is experiencing a modern plague of co-occurring addictive disorders, and it is going to get worse before it gets better. That’s why it must be dealt with now. At ONE80CENTER, our clinical team and staff are experts when it comes to treating co-occurring alcohol and substance abuse disorders while making sure that any underlying mental problems and psychological issues are fully addressed.
SAMHSA Report Shows Huge Surge In Number of Americans Treated for Addiction to Prescription Painkillers From 1999 to 2009
According to a SAMHSA report (the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration), rehab and treatment center admissions related to prescription painkillers, mostly due to use of prescription opioids, which include painkillers such as oxycodone (Oxycontin) and Percocet have increased dramatically in the United States between 1999 and 2009, according to a new national report by SAMHSA. The staggering increases for prescription drugs over the 10-year study period shocked the researchers. When the clinical experts at ONE80CENTER learned of the study results, they were not surprised in the least. Admissions at ONE80CENTER for prescription painkillers have been consistent and increasing every quarter. The prescription drug problem is simply out of control.
Rising Abuse of Prescription Painkillers
The findings of the study showed that 96 percent of the nearly 2 million admissions to treatment facilities that occurred in 2009 were related to alcohol (42 percent), opiates (21 percent), marijuana (18 percent), cocaine (9 percent) and methamphetamine/amphetamines (6 percent). The report from the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) identified trends in the reasons why people are admitted to substance abuse treatment facilities. The SAMHSA report revealed that prescription drugs were to blame for 33 percent of opiate rehab admissions in 2009 — up from just 8 percent a decade earlier. And the key prescription painkiller and opiate narcotic that led to this increase is Oxycontin and its rising abuse among teenagers and young people. Oxycontin abuse and addiction is at the heart of the abuse of prescription painkillers.
Does that statistic take your breath away as you come to realize how serious prescription painkiller abuse and addiction have become in our society? A four-fold increase in ten years is staggering, but it very could be a drop in the hat compared to the next ten years. In the past couple of years, Oxycontin abuse and addiction has been increasing both in the so-called legal pill mills, doctors abusing their prescription pads, and street dealers making prescription painkillers the main money staple of their illegal drug inventories.
SAMHSA Report Shows Huge Increase In Opiate Addiction
Compounding the problem, 44 percent of those who abused alcohol admitted to using other drugs as well. Co-dependency and co-addiction is becoming more and more common. “This new report shows the challenge our nation’s health system must address as the treatment needs of people with drug and alcohol problems continue to evolve,” SAMHSA administrator, Pamela S. Hyde, said in an agency news release. “People often arrive in treatment programs with multiple problems — including dependency or addiction to multiple substances of abuse.” Since prescription painkillers like Oxycontin and Percocet are legal and prescribed, people seem to be more casual in their abuse and less likely to realize the dangers of addiction and overdose. SAMHSA is focusing on a strategy of education, awareness and prevention.
In the report, however, Hyde made it clear that the rise in patients and addicts seeking treatment for prescription painkiller abuse was the most surprising statistic. The rise in Oxycontin addicts and prescription opiate abusers across the board is a plague that must be addressed today. The clinical team at ONE80CENTER is continuing to do provide not only the best in alcoholism and addiction treatment services, but also raise awareness and foster prevention of the prescription painkiller problem at hand. If you or a loved one is abusing prescription painkillers like Oxycontin or any prescription drug, contact ONE80CENTER today by calling toll free 888.588.4180.