Prescription Drug Abuse
PRESCRIPTION DRUG ABUSE 14
Prescriptiondrugs are the medications offered under medical prescription. Thedrugs are primarily pharmaceutical drugs that are dispensed at theexpense of a medical professional`s requirement. Relatively, theprescription drugs are subjected to relevant legislations based on aparticular state or nation. For instance, in the United Kingdom,prescription drugs are governed by an Act known as the Federal Food,Drug, and Cosmetic Act (Bart, 2012). Under the Drug Enforcement Act,the US federal government defines the several professionals obligatedas well as those not authorized to administer or else prescribe acontrolled substance. As for the legislations that apply todispensing prescription drugs in the UK, the Medicine Act of 1968stipulates the production of such medicines, their supply, as well astheir use (Zgierska, Miller & Rabago, 2012).
Basedon the abuse of prescription drugs, most people tend to manipulatethe implemented legislations thus misusing a particular medicine(Gray, 2012). In this case, the misuse of prescription drugs occursin various ways which are primarily against either the doctor`sprescription or the government`s legislations or both. Some of theways in which prescription drugs are abused are inclusive of the actof taking medication for the primary purpose of euphoria, defying theprescribed dosage either through taking an overdose or an under dose,or the consumption of someone else`s prescription. The commonlymisused medications are subdivided into three classes. Thesecategories are the stimulants, opioids, and the Depressants of theCentral Nervous System (CNS) (Gray, 2012). Currently, the rate ofprescription drug abuse has increased due to the ease ofaccessibility. As such, most of the prescription drug abusers havesuccumbed to addiction that bears significant consequences to thenervous system. Ensure that the prescription drugs are relativelymonitored to mitigate their misuse or else their abuse is thusnecessary.
AStatement of the Issue or the problem. The Addressed Issue as well asthe Primary Goal
Themisuse of prescription drugs is considerably common among youngadults as well as teens. According to research, there is a highchance that a teenager has most likely abused a prescription drug ascompared to the rate at which the child may have abused an illegalstreet drug (Haffajee, Jena & Weiner, 2015). Such a highincidence of the prescription drug abuse is influenced by the notionthat the drugs are safe for consumption (Haffajee, Jena & Weiner,2015). Although the fact that these drugs are prescribed by thedoctor makes them safe for use, their abuse is significantlyhazardous to one`s health since the drugs will thus be utilized forthe wrong reasons and at the wrong ratios. Since the youth believethe prescription drugs are safe, they end up consuming them at a highrate which consequently translates to addictions that may causesevere consequences to an individual`s health.
Prescriptiondrugs are associated with significant health risks if taken for thewrong reasons and under the false orders (Haffajee, Jena &Weiner, 2015). It is due to this reason that these drugs are onlyadministered to individuals under a doctor`s prescription. Even undera physician`s order, the consumption of these drugs is also limitedto ensure that a patient does not succumb to addiction which may havelong-term effects t their health. On the other hand, the prescriptiondrugs may be abused unknowingly (Haffajee, Jena & Weiner, 2015).On this note, the prescription pills are characterized by similaroutlooks, though not all but most of them. As such, one may fall intoabusing the drugs based on the lack of knowledge. At this point, itis upon an individual to ensure that he or she does not take a pillwith the uncertainty of its purpose.
Followingthe research enhanced by medical professionals, approximately 2.8% ofthe US population abused prescription drugs (Bart, 2012). Precisely,over 7 million American citizens misused prescription drugs (Bart,2012). Adolescents make up the highest percentage of victims ofprescription drug abuse. On this note, the research stipulates thatout of 12 high school seniors, one of them was reported to practicethe non-medical use of Vicodin whereas out of 20 other students, onewas reported to abuse OxyContin (Bart, 2012). The accessibility ofsuch drugs is attributed to the peer influence amid the youth whilemostly, these students access the drugs through the internet. Thetallies of the prescription drugs abuse are relatively at high levelsthus raising the alarm for effective and instant intervention for theprovision of solutions to the problem. Such an abuse of prescriptiondrugs has been predominant in the society thus proving not to be anew issue. Nevertheless, the current rise in the misuse of thesedrugs is what calls for immediate and adequate attention both fromthe government and the society as a whole.
Theprimary goal of addressing such a problem associated with the misuseof prescription drugs is the creation of awareness. People have to beaware of how they can be vulnerable to abusing prescription drugseither knowingly or unknowingly. Most importantly, the society has tobe educated on the effects of prescription drug abuse based on boththe long-term and the short-term consequences. Since the issue ofprescription drug abuse has significantly accelerated to dangerouslevels, it is, therefore, important to ensure that strategic measuresare implemented and executed. As such, involving relevant governmentlegislations is the other crucial objective based on theidentification of the problem with prescription drug abuse. Under theimplementation of the applicable state legislations, there is theneed to incorporate adequate and skilled personnel in ensuring thatthe increased rate of prescription drug misuse is mitigated or elseeliminated.
AStatement on how I Studied the Topic
Prescriptiondrug abuse is one of the biggest challenges towards important socialdevelopment in the current society. As such, it has led to theincreased number of school drop outs, significant addictions amongthe youth, the prevalence of severe health disorders as well asnumerous deaths. On this note, the topic, ‘Prescription DrugAbuse,` is relatively essential and critical as well to research on.It is due to his reason that I managed to study the topic onprescription drug abuse effectively. Also, since the issue ofprescription drug abuse is relatively prevalent in the society,finding the context of the necessary information was fairly easy.
Informationon What is Already Known about the Issue of
Mostly,the abused prescription drugs are divided into three categories.These classes are inclusive of stimulants, opioids, and theDepressants of the Central Nervous System. As for the opioids, theyare the prescription drugs used to treat pain. Some of the opioidsare the Oxymorphone, Hydrocodone (Dilaudid), and the Oxycodone(Oxycontin), among others (Zosel, Bartelson, Bailey & Lowenstein,2013). Primarily, the opioids are used for treating chronic pain.Over the past years, the medications for opioids drugs haverelatively increased following the prevalence of an aging populationwhich is relatively accompanied by the persistence of chronic pain.When taken as prescription drugs, the opioids are effective inmanaging pain As such they improve the quality of life for theindividuals suffering from chronic pain. Also, when used for a shortperiod, they are rarely associated with addiction. On the other hand,when the opioids are misused, they lead to the depression of theCentral Nervous System (Zosel, Bartelson, Bailey & Lowenstein,2013). Relatively, the incorporation of opioids with other drugs suchas alcohol and Valium. Consequently, such a misuse of these drugstranslates to the increased risk of significant respiratorydepressions and in some cases, it may lead to death.
TheCentral Nervous System Depressants help in providing a much treatmentfor the sleeping disorders, such as insomnia, as well as treatinganxiety. The architecture of the CNS depressants is based on thedecrease of the brain activity through affecting thegamma-aminobutyric acid (Maier, Lietchi, Herzig & Scahub, 2013).As a result, the individual acquires a calming effect or drowsiness.Other CNS depressants include the Amytal, Seconal, and the Nembutal(Maier, Lietchi, Herzig & Scahub, 2013). Commonly, these drugsare meant to be used in the treatment of anesthesia. Besides, thesedrugs are prescribed for the treatment of seizures.
Followingthe prevalence of the overdose dangers associated by the CNSdepressants, they have relatively been replaced by thebenzodiazepines (Gray, 2012). This is because most people wereabusing the CNS depressants to treat anxiety and insomnia undershort-term basis (Gray, 2012). The increased use of CNS depressantstranslates to tan addiction. Also, the body becomes immune to thesedrugs thus one has to consume large doses to meet the required needs.Also, misusing these depressants with alcohol reciprocates to aslowed pulse rate as well as breathing. This may even result in deathin severe cases. Finally, suddenly ceasing from the consumption ofthe CNS depressants after consuming for an extended period can leadto the acquisition of withdrawal seizures (Gray, 2012).
Asfor the stimulants, they are mostly prescribed to give the body aquick jumpstart. This causes an increase in attention and astimulation of energy as well as alertness. In addition to providingthe body with a quick jumpstart, the stimulants also increase theheart rate and open the respiratory system`s pathways. Othersignificant applications of the simulants range from the constrictionof blood vessels to raising blood sugar. Some of the stimulants areinclusive of methylphenidate, lisdexamfetamine, anddextroamphetamine (Bramness, Henriksen, Person & Mann, 2013).When taken under the prescription of a doctor, the stimulants arerelatively safe for the human body. On the other hand, when misusedthrough either overdosing or for euphoria, these drugs have adverseeffects. Some of these effects are inclusive of addictions andirregularities in the rhythms of the heart. Furthermore, theincreased dosage of these drugs results in the growing bodytemperatures.
TheComprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act is the first major drugaddiction legislation in the United States` constitution for over 40years (Kuehn, 2014). Signed on the 22nd of July 2016, the CARArevolves around all the appropriate contexts of drug abuse and theirsubsequent addictions (Kuehn, 2014). As such, the prescription drugabuse is relatively encompassed by this legislation. Mainly, the lawcovers the opioid epidemic. Also, this law is structured around thenecessary response measures towards curbing the abuse of prescriptiondrugs. These actions are inclusive of the overdose reversal,treatment, prevention, recovery, the criminal justice reform as wellas the appropriate law enforcement. Subsequently, the law authorizesa total of 181 million dollars per annum that is used in fighting theopioid epidemic (Gray & Hagemeier, 2012). The CARA provides asufficient and efficient platform for the strategic enhancement ofthe grant programs that are primarily aimed at enhancing theeducational and prevention efforts. The evaluation of theComprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act based on treatment andrecovery, law enforcement and treatment and prevention and educationis as discussed below.
Accordingto the section 101 of the CARA law, the prescription of opioids hasto be subjected to a measure of the development of ethical andconsiderable practices (Jann, Kennedy & Lopez, 2014). Theimplementation of this section is based on the involvement ofappropriate representatives. Some of these representatives are theaddiction treatment organizations, federal agencies, the DEA, and theCenter for Disease Control among others. These officials are mandatedto ensure that utmost ethical measures are enhanced in the practiceof prescribing pain management and medication rules. Also, the taskforce is obliged to report to the Congress presenting theirrecommendations while also outlining a dissemination strategy.
Subsequently,section 102 of the CARA law stipulates the active creation ofawareness campaigns. As for this section, the attorney general andthe HHS are both obligated to advance the educational and outreachmeasures based on the risk of prescription drug abuse. Moreover, thissection provides a national campaign for drug awareness. The nationaldrug awareness campaign is facilitated by the ONCDP (Jann, Kennedy &Lopez, 2014). Primarily, the ONDCP focuses on the dangers of fentanylas well as creating attention to the aspect of heroin use andprescription opioid abuse (Jann, Kennedy & Lopez, 2014).
Thethird section of this law is based on the impact of the community inaddressing the drug crises. In this section, the HHS incorporationwith the ONDCP is authorized to make significant grants to theentities affected by the crisis of medications (Bramness, Henriksen,Person & Mann, 2013). Therefore, the two organizations implementappropriate prevention strategies that are aimed at the community asa whole.
LawEnforcement and Treatment
Underthe law enforcement and treatment substituent of the CARA law,section 201 stipulates the implementation of alternative treatmentthat aims at incarceration programs (Jann, Kennedy & Lopez,2014). In this section, both the HHS and the attorney general areauthorized to make grants to the relevant institutions and agencies.Such systems include the local governments, the states, thenon-profits or the Indian tribes. Through making appropriate grants,the HHS and the attorney general are thus mandated to determine,implement and expand the alternative treatment measures for theindividuals that meet particular specific criteria. Also, theprovision of alternative treatment measures is subjected toparticular circumstances such as the correction of officials and theconsent of both the defense and the prosecuting attorneys (Jann,Kennedy & Lopez, 2014). The process of enhancing this sectionrequires periodic updates that determine the progress of theparticular individuals placed in the alternative settings.
Section202 enhances the first responder training for the abuse of prescribeddrugs (Jann, Kennedy & Lopez, 2014). The training is based on theuse of devices and medicines that have a significant impact inreversing the consequences of the opioids. The HHS is authorized tomake relevant grants that enhance the training that revolves aroundthe purchase and the use of naloxone.
Inthe third section, section 203, the attorney general in conjunctionwith the DEA are authorized to develop and expand the disposal sitesthat substantially habitat the unwanted prescription medications(Jann, Kennedy & Lopez, 2014). Besides, these sites have to becontrolled as well as being secured from public access. Finally, thefourth section allows the attorney general to make grants to the lawenforcement agencies of the state asking them to investigate theenhanced illegal activities that primarily relate to the distributionof both fentanyl and heroin. Also, the attorney general`s grants mayalso involve the unlawful distribution of prescription opioids.
Treatmentand recovery form the third aspect of the CARA law. In the firstsection of this aspect, the demonstration of the intervention betweenthe prescription of heroin and opioid based on relevant evidence isenhanced (Zullig & Divin, 2012). As such, the Center forSubstance Abuse Treatment is obligated to make grants to the involvedagencies in the geographical locations with a rapid rate ofprescription drugs such as heroin and opioids. Consequently, thesecompanies are mandated to expand their activities in the applicableareas. One of the activities extended is the provision ofmedication-assisted treatment.
Section302 is based on the use of demonstrations in the intervention processbased on the Criminal Justice Medication Treatment (Zullig &Divin, 2012). As such, both the attorney general and the HHS areauthorized to make relevant grants to the associated entities for theenhancement of the administration of medication assisted programs.These programs are subjected to the criminal justice agencies.
Onthe third section, section 303, the national youth recoveryinitiative forms the primary aspect of treatment and retrieval(Zullig & Divin, 2012). In this section, the main target is theeducational sector where the young people are involved in largenumbers. As such, the secretary of education is authorized to makethe relevant grants to the respective learning institutions with theaim of providing the required support for the recovery from substanceuse disorders. The targeted group in this section of the CARA law isthe youth especially the individuals enrolled in the higherinstitutions of learning as well as high school students. Finally,the fourth section, section 304, bases its operation on building thecommunities for efficient recovery measures (Zullig & Divin,2012). In this section, the HHS has the mandate to award grants tocertain independent organizations. These organizations should benon-profit organizations. In this context, the teams are therebyobligated to ensure the development and the expansion of theappropriate recovery services.
ASummary Learnt from this Research
Prescriptiondrug abuse is a significant war that has to be fought with all theefforts and resources available. This is due to its prevalence in thesociety and the adverse effects it bears to the individuals and thecommunity as a whole. Primarily, the problem associated withprescription drug abuse is the enhancement of adverse health effectswhich are caused by the prevailing notion that prescribed drugs aresafe for misuse since they are approved by the doctor. Mostly, theabused prescription drugs are divided into three categories. Thesegroups are inclusive of stimulants, opioids, and the Depressants ofthe Central Nervous System. The misuse of this drugs bears harmfuleffects to the body that range from damaged respiratory systems toslow pulse rates and then to death. The government has madeconsistent efforts to face this challenge by implementing the CARAlaw. Through this law, the issue of prescription drug abuse willgradually be mitigated and thus controlled in the end. Through suchvaluable lessons acquired from the research on prescription drugabuse, I am in a position to understand the situation as well asstaying confident that the issue will be adequately handled.
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