Almost 2 million Americans have taken Oxycodone, a prescription painkiller, for recreational purposes, according to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). Individuals can quickly become addicted to medications, such as Oxycodone, after taking them in high doses. Rehabilitation facilities can help addicts detoxify, but prescription drug dependency may take years to kick.
New research conducted by University of Tennessee (UT) professor, Todd Bess, found that prescription addiction is taking its toll residents in Tennessee. Deaths related to prescription drugs topped more than 1,600 between 2006 and 2008. More individuals are finding that the substances are easy to obtain directly from their own medicine cabinets.
“You’re breathing becomes shallow, your brain is deprived of oxygen then your blood stops and you die – you basically quit breathing,” UT professor Glen Farr told VolunteerTV.
Authorities are continuing to increase the number of disposal events held across the state. At these events, individuals can drop off all old, unwanted prescription medications. This can help reduce the availability of these substances for recreational use.
Rehabilitation facilities can help individuals with a dependency on prescription drugs, and their loved ones.