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The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) reports that approximately one-third of all drug abuse in the US is prescription drug abuse.Prescription drug abuse is a significant emerging problem. Prescription drug (Rx) abuse means taking a prescription medication that is not prescribed for you, or taking it for reasons or in dosages other than as prescribed. Abuse of prescription drugs can produce serious health effects, including addiction.Wall Street Journal: Clampdown on Pain Meds
DEA Restricts Narcotic Pain Drug Prescriptions
Government Seeks to Curb Abuse of Hydrocodone Combination Pills
Prescription drug abuse killed 16,500 Americans according to the latest available official statistics (2010 / Office of National Drug Control Policy), according to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health / Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: | Methadone Bottle Storage 6.2 million Americans aged 12 or older reported current (past month) use of prescription drugs for non-medical purposes (2.5% of the population). Most reported abusing opiate pain relievers.
The overwhelming majority of teens obtain prescription drugs through people they know. Research shows that over 45 percent of 12- to 17-year-olds who abuse prescription pain relievers get them for free from a friend or relative.
11 percent of these teens buy them from friends or relatives, and an additional 10 percent take them from friends or relatives without asking.
Lack of adequate security of abuse-potential medications contributes to prescription drug abuse, across all age groups, from pre-teens to the elderly, according to the Partnership for a Drug-Free America.Opioids
include hydrocodone (Vicodin®), oxycodone (OxyContin®), propoxyphene (Darvon®), hydromorphone (Dilaudid®), meperidine (Demerol®), and diphenoxylate (Lomotil®).Central nervous system depressants
include barbiturates such as pentobarbital sodium (Nembutal®), and benzodiazepines such as diazepam (Valium®) and alprazolam (Xanax®).Stimulants
include dextroamphetamine (Dexedrine®), methylphenidate (Ritalin® and Concerta®), and amphetamines (Adderall®).