When the opioid issue was confirmed as an epidemic in the U.S., many folks were surprised. The majority of people have been aware that opioid addiction and overdose were both becoming more common, but it appeared as though many had no idea as to the extent. So, how did this happen? How did we get to this point? How did we allow this to take place?
It all started in the late 1990s when pharmaceutical companies claimed that patients would not become addicted to opioid pain relievers. Once they had the medical community convinced that these medications were, in essence, harmless to patients, medical professionals began prescribing them at higher rates than before. If it was harmless, then why not make sure everyone had access to essentially as many as they wanted?
This increase in prescriptions ultimately ended up leading to the extensive misuse of the medications. As the spread occurred, as did more and more overdoses and addictive behaviors. Misuse spread from the patient to their family members and/or friends, and addiction tore people away from their homes, children, and from reality. It wasn’t until it was too late that the issue was declared an epidemic.
To put this all into perspective, please see below for information from 2016, provided by the Department of Health and Human Services:
– 11.5 million people misused prescription opioids.
– 42, 249 people died from overdosing on opioids.
– 2.1 million people misused prescription opioids for the first time.
– 17,087 deaths were attributed to overdosing on commonly prescribed opioids.
– 19,413 deaths were attributed to overdosing on synthetic opioids other than methadone.
The numbers are both astounding and devastating, and it will take a valiant effort on the part of every person to end the epidemic and stop these numbers from increasing further.
You can help by:
– Decreasing the amount of opioids that are prescribed to yourself and other family members. Make sure you NEED them, rather than just want them.
– Be aware of your medicine cabinet and store all medications out of reach of children, teens, and even other family members.
– Acknowledge your need for opioid prescriptions by monitoring your pain levels. These prescriptions are typically meant for short-term issues, so going beyond short-term can be dangerous and/or deadly.
– Dispose of your medications in a timely manner, and this includes medications that are expired, unused, or no longer wanted/needed.
At Rx Disposal, we want to ensure that all medications are being disposed of safely and effectively. From hospitals, to pharmacies, to clinics, to households, we want to make sure that everyone is safe when it comes to dealing with opioids. By using NarcX®, you are saving time, money, and even lives when you can easily and properly dispose of medications right on site. Our products are environmentally safe and can ultimately help to bring an end to the opioid epidemic.
Be part of the solution and get NarcX® for your hospital, clinic, pharmacy, or household today. 1.303.434.1630
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