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Thread: Opoid crisis. Why is this happening!?!

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    Senior Member razz's Avatar
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    Opoid crisis. Why is this happening!?!

    I am trying to understand the opioid crisis. Some of it is those using drugs not knowing the seriousness of the pollution in the drugs that they are taking like fentanyl etc.
    But why all the drug use? Why the surrender of personal sovereignty (self-governance) to drug dealers and friends who suggest "just try it".
    I know alcohol was the drug with huge addictive issues but opioid use seems different somehow - more widespread addiction.
    Help me understand please .
    Gandhi: Happiness is when what you think, what you say and what you do are in harmony .

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    Quote Originally Posted by razz View Post
    I am trying to understand the opioid crisis. Some of it is those using drugs not knowing the seriousness of the pollution in the drugs that they are taking like fentanyl etc.
    But why all the drug use? Why the surrender of personal sovereignty (self-governance) to drug dealers and friends who suggest "just try it".
    I know alcohol was the drug with huge addictive issues but opioid use seems different somehow - more widespread addiction.
    Help me understand please .
    For starters, a third of the people who are prescribed opiod painkillers by their physicians will probably become addicted.
    Very, very, very powerful stuff.

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    Senior Member JaneV2.0's Avatar
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    I wouldn't touch them unless it was an end of life thing. Probably not then, barring intractable pain. They just encourage one's brain to grow more pain receptors.

    I have a friend who is on a small dose for arthritis, but she's finding that cannabis is as effective, so I hope she tapers off and quits eventually.

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    Senior Member Williamsmith's Avatar
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    You have to be a cynic...like me...to wrap your brain around it. The first thing I'd like to have acknowledged is that as humans we are all addictive beings. Just because it takes a decade or two to reap the results of an addiction doesn't make it any better comparatively. Sugar which causes diabetes and leads to early life complications is just as much a crisis as opioids. Perhaps...more?

    Opiods are the politically correct drug to focus on right now. Politicians are using it as a tool much like marijuana was portrayed as a gateway drug that caused you to turn into a fiend. The vast majority of people who were prescribed opiods for one pain or another....did not get addicted.

    The reason all these prescriptions flooded our population is that the pharma companies were making good money marketing them and physicians had to be encouraged to prescribe them as often as possible. Eventually, there were huge hoards of opiods in houses especially in older chronically ill people who stashed these pain killers because the process for getting them was either inconvenient or costing more and more as co payments for doctors visits and prescriptions went up.

    A certian segment of society found out the drug was the kind of high they preferred and took up burglary, theft and prescription fraud in order to keep the supply fluid. But that supply has been choked off by stricter policies and threat of lawsuit and revocation of physicians licenses. So the addicted turned toward heroin. It is cheaper and can virtually be found in any town. Unfortunately there is no quality control and it gets cut with some bad substances. And so, people are overdosing. With the proliferation of narcan.....users feel more emboldened because they think if they overdose they will be likely saved by emergency responders. Further, rehabilitation facilities are not very successful in getting addicted persons to turn around.

    It is a crisis.....because in part we are addictive beings.....in part our government lacks the necessary will to get serious about rehabilitation and education, they take a view that has long been used and long been unsuccessful.....punishment. And in part, because we like to use any excuse in this country to make money even if it is from killing off a certain segment of our people that are especially vulnerable.

    A kid I coached in baseball was recently sentenced to many many years in state prison for armed robbery and theft. He is a heroin addict. Another just died this weekend of a heroin overdose. He has been battling it for at least five years. Another, I golf with in my league. He just got out of rehab last week but sees no reason to be optimistic. If you picture homeless people in alleys as the average addict....you are way off. They are dentists, doctors, lawyers, police officers, professionals of all kinds.....and we are headed in the wrong direction because our politicians choose to vilify these people instead of help them.

    In the meantime, the people who really need opiods to get through the day won't get any alternative help like canibis because of the same mentality.

    Thats my rant for the day.

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    I am concerned because I see some of this being prescribed to kids for things like broken arms. My kids had broken arms and it was hard but they got pain relief from milder medications. One kid was sent to summer camp with a prescription opiod! I locked it up and gave it to mom to never bring back. Mom said the child didn't need it, strong motrin for the first 2 days is all.

    Scary stuff.

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    Senior Member JaneV2.0's Avatar
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    I agree they seem to be way over-prescribed--thanks to Pharma and our profit-driven medical system. And then a significant crossover develops between opioids and heavy street drugs, which produces more and more addicts.

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    I get angry about this "opioid crisis". When the addicts were poor and black in the cities we had "3 strikes and you're out" Now it is a crisis needing "treatment and understanding" because it is hitting suburbia and middle class.

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    I am a middle aged (humor me) white woman. got diluted bleach in my eye. The ER flushed it out and rinsed it with an antibiotic. I described the pain as a 3. They sent me home with antibiotic eye drops and oral codeine. A 3. I didn't even look at the bottle until I got home. It was a $10 total copayment. I figured it was supertylenol when they said "something for the pain".

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chicken lady View Post
    I am a middle aged (humor me) white woman. got diluted bleach in my eye. The ER flushed it out and rinsed it with an antibiotic. I described the pain as a 3. They sent me home with antibiotic eye drops and oral codeine. A 3. I didn't even look at the bottle until I got home. It was a $10 total copayment. I figured it was supertylenol when they said "something for the pain".
    My experience with opioid prescriptions has been very different. Maybe it depends on where you live.
    Example--husband feel 20 feet and shattered pelvis. They gave him a shot at the er, gave me one pill to take home, and I had to fill a prescription for him for 2 weeks of medication. He stopped taking after 5 days.

    Example--I went to ER with back spasms that were crippling; could not walk--they gave me one or two weeks of opiod. I took for 3 days but could not work on it, it made me too loopy.

    I have not seen a lot of prescriptions for a very long time when we have encountered these drugs recently.

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    Senior Member catherine's Avatar
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    Williamsmith explained what has happened very well, from my understanding. Legal narcotics being widely prescribed and available leading to addiction by not only the person prescribed, but family members with access. I've done a lot of market research on opioids--companies are are trying to make them abuse-resistant and doctors have all kinds of protocols they have to abide by.

    The whole idea of heroin scares the heck out of me. It seems so unforgiving in terms of hooking you. I have two close acquaintances who have died of a heroin overdose, and my cousin just posted about a friend of hers-- a 24-year old casualty who died yesterday. It is such a horrible waste to see these young people with so much promise die. Often it's unintentional.

    nswef, you raise a great point. But it's not just the racial issue.. the fact is that opioid deaths have skyrocketed over the past 3 decades--from fewer than 10k in 1985 to over 60k last year.
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