Prescription Drug Abuse

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Prescription Drug Abuse Essay

Prescription drug are drugs used locally to treat people of various illnesses and disorders (Wolny,6), when these drugs are used illegally or without following prescribed instructions, these drugs will be abused. Illegal prescription of drugs is biggest health problem in not only United States but also Europe and other parts of the world. Prescription drug abuse occurs in all socio-economic and ethnic groups and nobody is immune of these drugs.Prescription Drug Abuse Essay


Prescription drug abuse causes series of health problems, which may include irritation, restlessness, and increased rate of nausea, terrible mood swings and other minor ailments. Furthermore, greater use of abused drugs causes major problems including changes in brain activity, body physiological changes and in some circumstances leads to death.(Wolny 6). Prescription drug abuse is illegal, anybody found selling of those drugs is prosecuted.

Types of prescription drug abuse
Abused prescription drugs include depressants, stimulants, antidepressants, opioids and morphine derivatives. There many types of depressant drugs that have been abused for instance, Xanax, valium, Librium, amytal, Nembutal and other drugs. These drugs vary in their names and sizes. Opioids and morphine derivatives are drugs that are used to relieve the nervous system. They are mostly known as painkillers. They are in different forms e.g. liquid, tablets or capsules.Prescription Drug Abuse Essay

These drugs are most abused. Apart from morphine derivatives and depressants, stimulants are mostly used drugs. They increase alertness andenergy; stimulants also increase heartbeat, increase blood pressure, and increase the rate of breathing. When used for long time these drugs causehabit and the users cannot live without using them. In most instances, depressants appear as liquid and tablets, but can also appear as capsules. Another category of abused drugs is antidepressants. These include Prozac, Paxil, celexa and others. These drugs are mainly used to handle depression.

Effect of prescription drug abuse
Prescription drug abuse are associated with many effects both long terms and short term effects. Depressants causes many short term effects, including, slow brain function, dizziness, fever, confusion, slow pulse and breathing, poor concentration, addition, sluggishness, lack of coordination, lowered blood pressure and depression. High doses of depressants cause memory impairment, paranoia, irritability and poor coordination. Heavy use of sedatives and tranquilizer slow breath and rate of heart beat and even lead to death.Prescription Drug Abuse Essay

Heavy use of depressants lead to long term effects including depression, breathing problems, chronic fatigued, sexual problems and sleeping disorders. Continued use of these drugs causes dependency that increases cravings, panic and anxiety if user cannot get more. When addicted user withdraws from depressants, they get insomnia, nausea and body weakness. For the high users, withdrawal leads to detrimental effects such as high body temperatures, agitation, hallucination, convulsion and delirium. (Roberts,10) In addition, increase use of depressants can increase risk of high blood sugar, diabetes and weight. Furthermore, in a study conducted by Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) antipsychotic drug, a depressant, caused liver failure, heart problems and increased suicide cases.Prescription Drug Abuse Essay

Opioids and morphine derivatives, also known as painkillers have many short term and long term effects that are detrimental to human health. The short-term effects of these drugs include drowsiness, slowed breathing, constipation, unconsciousness, coma and nausea. Continued use or long term use of drugs lead to physical dependence and addition. Long-term use of these drugs leads to body adaptation to these drugs and withdrawal leads to effects such as restlessness, insomnia, diarrhea, vomiting, cold flashes, muscle pain and bone pain. In addition, continued use of morphine drugs lead to body tolerance, this means that body cannot function without increased amount of dose to achieve desired high effect, this leads to addiction which lead to high problems like stealing. Opioids and morphine drugs can cause death when use in high doses. (Compton, Wilson &Noran, 20-30)

Depressants are most common abused prescription drug, user of stimulants cause depression, exhaustion and apathy. Stimulants cause addition, the user feel weak and long lasting exhaustion, this means that the user must always use these drugs to feel the energy. The long-term effects of stimulants are feeling of hostility or paranoia. High doses of stimulant may result in irregular breathing and high body temperatures. In addition, most stimulants also lead to headache, increased heartbeat as well as muscle weakness.Prescription Drug Abuse Essay

Antidepressant drugs are widely used and have high range of effects. The short-term effects of antidepressants are irritability, insomnia, violent actions and thoughts, nervousness or anxiety, hostility, tremors and suicidal thoughts. Furthermore, antidepressants causes sweating, confusion and incoherent thoughts, psychosis, aggression, hallucinations, and paranoia. High doses of antidepressants lead to heart problems, liver failure, kidney failures and even death. The withdrawal symptoms of antidepressants are headaches, vomiting, insomnia, aggression, anxiety, suicidal thoughts and tremors. Antidepressants increase addition when use and increase dependence. Also, antidepressants alters all boding functions and increases aggression especially to young people. (Foundation for a Drug-Free World, 3-10)

Solution to prescription drug abuse
Getting solutions to prescription drug abuse is not an easy task; it needs combination of approaches and measures to tame this pandemic. The U.S Center for Disease and Prevention declared drug abuse as national pandemic, CDC further says that many lives and thousands of dollars are use every year. Therefore, prescription drug abuse needs formidable solutions and those solutions must be able to control the spread of prescription drug abuse. Some of the prosed solutions are, first, government must develop prescription-monitoring program, this programs should control and monitor drug prescriptions and ensure that all the drugs are clearly prescribe before use.Prescription Drug Abuse Essay

Importantly, the government must ensure that this program is funded and supported, monitoring program will be able to manage production and sell of drugs. Secondly, enact good legislative framework to govern prescription drugs, this legislative framework will assist clinicians adequately use prescription monitoring program. Legislation will enable the Food and Drugs authority and CDC to manage production and sale of genuine drugs. Good legislative framework also describe penalties and strict measure for those found producing, selling and even using prescription drugs abuse. Important, the government must not support the enforcement of legislations. (Estren, 24-37)


Thirdly, negotiate and facilitate data sharing, data sharing between different states and regions to curb drug trafficking. Different states must ensure that there is communication and information sharing within the concern departments. The data sharing include information on type of illegal prescription illegal, information of drug trafficking and information of stores and main sources of drug abuse. (Estren, 24-37)Information sharing include laws and regulations.Prescription Drug Abuse Essay

The negotiation and data sharing between different departments is important, this communication will enhance enforcement of necessary legislations. This is importantly because the police and law enforcement officers will use laws to curb spread of abused drugs. Another important solution to prescription drug abuse is requiring doctors and health care department to create database to record and track patient prescription. This is important because it will enable other doctors in future to follow patients’ drug use. In addition, creating a database will enable the doctor to know whether other doctors had prescribed the drug earlier.Prescription Drug Abuse Essay

For instance when doctors give patient prescription for a painkiller like OxyContin, the doctor could consult the database to see whether it had been prescribe earlier. Another important solution to prescription drug abuse is educating both patients and doctors, the patients must be thought about the importance of keeping the required prescription and importance of safeguarding the drugs. The patients need to understand the importance of safekeeping the drugs away from children. The doctors need to understand importance of basing prescriptions on scientific knowledge and not patient satisfaction.(Estren, 24-37)Prescription Drug Abuse Essay

Prescription drug abuse is using drugs in inappropriate manner without following the requiredprescriptions; this phenomenon is national disaster and needs immediate redress. There are many effects of prescription drug abuse; some are long term while others are short term. The types of prescribe drug abuse range from antidepressants to stimulants. Prescription drug abuse needs immediate solution that will address issues to its conclusive end.Prescription Drug Abuse Essay

With access to prescription drugs, people are able to treat a multitude of diseases and illnesses. These drugs help deal with pain, inability to sleep, depression, and much more. Every day we are increasingly living in a world where there is better living through chemicals. However, what most do not seem to see is the rising tide of pain, illness, and ultimately death being caused by the pills people take every day. Most keep drugs in a special place in their minds, where they see them as harmless. Sadly, this is not the case, and in some cases our prescription drugs can be just as harmful as illegal drugs (King 68).Prescription Drug Abuse Essay

In addition, these drugs are just as addicting as some of the drugs that most hold to be off-limits
Opioid drugs are some of the most widespread pain medications that we have in this country; indeed, the fact is that opioid analgesic prescriptions have increased by over 300% from 1999 to 2010 (Mitch 989). Consequently, the number of deaths from overdose increased from 4000 to 16,600 a year in the same time frame (Mitch 989). This fact becomes even more frightening when you think about today; the annual number of fatal drug overdoses in the Unites States now surpasses that of motor vehicle deaths (Alexander 1865). Even worse, overdose deaths caused by opioids specifically exceed those attributed to both cocaine and heroin combined (Alexander 1865).Prescription Drug Abuse Essay

While our major access to these drugs is doctors, we cannot simply lay blame on them, as there is not enough knowledge about these treatments to correctly appropriate drugs, and therefore extra is given (Hemphill 373). Alexander of the Department of Epidemiology of the Journal of the American Medical Association, states that “There are serious gaps in the knowledge base regarding opioid use for other chronic nonmalignant pain” (Alexander 1865-1866), which leads to the unfortunately large number of leftover drugs. In fact, the main place that people get their drugs are from leftover prescriptions (Hemphill 373).

This leads to a bigger problem for our youth, where 81% of OTC drug abusers also end up using marijuana and hallucinogens (King 68). Over a million arrests are made every year Prescription Drug Abuse Essay