Essay on Painkillers: a Growing Epidemic

2090 Words Jun 7th, 2011 9 Pages
Painkillers: A Growing Epidemic

I visit my grandmother every month at her house. We relive all of the happy moments we shared when I was growing up. On my latest visit, she did not want to talk about the good times we shared, and seemed almost annoyed I was there at all. After searching around her house, I noticed an empty bottle of prescription painkillers. I remembered her telling me the last time I talked to her that she was starting to take a new prescription pain medication, but that was only two weeks ago. My grandmother would never abuse drugs, so why was the bottle empty already? I asked her about the medication and she told me that she was taking up to eight pills a day. She had misinterpreted the instructions and was
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The elderly have a tendency to hide prescription drug abuse by visiting several different doctors and obtaining multiple prescriptions for the same medication.
Doctors have other problems as well when it comes to prescribing painkillers. Doctors receive little education when it comes to prescribing these powerful medications. Most doctors are compassionate when it comes to their patient and their pain, and they do not want to challenge their patient by saying that their patient is an addict. This can make a physician’s decision on whether or not to prescribe a painkiller to a patient very difficult. There are many people with a legitimate need for the painkillers and there are many people seeking the painkillers as a kind of recreational drug. Because of this dilemma, many people argue that since there are a large amount of people in need of the medication to continue things the way they are and deal with the problems of addiction later. This, however, is a costly solution to the problem of pain killer addiction.
Painkillers have many negative side effects that affect the majority of Americans. These negative side effects cost society everything from money to deal with the abuse to careless actions by the abuser to loss of life. The only positive thing that comes with addiction to painkillers is the thousands of jobs that are created to help people deal with their addictions.

The first signs of addiction to painkillers are social and physical side

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