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Painkiller Abuse Hits Close To Home For A Majority Of Americans: Poll

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posted on Nov, 24 2015 @ 07:37 AM
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Painkiller Abuse Hits Close To Home For A Majority Of Americans: Poll

Yesterday, I made a thread on the heroin epidemic and how politicians are starting to address it. Now, I'm going to touch on the cause of the epidemic. The notorious pill epidemic. It still exists, but here is the thing that is noticeably different between this epidemic and other ones.


More than half of Americans know someone who has abused prescription painkillers or died from an overdose, or has taken these medications themselves to get high, as the opioid epidemic continues to spread, according to a new poll.

Just 6 percent of those surveyed said they had abused painkillers, such as OxyContin, but 25 percent know a close friend or family member who has. Forty-five percent are acquainted with people who have used these medications without a prescription, and 39 percent know someone who became addicted, according to a Henry J. Kaiser Family foundation survey. Sixteen percent report knowing a person who died from an overdose of pain medication, and 9 percent said they'd lost a relative or good friend to an overdose. Together, that amounts to 56 percent of Americans touched by prescription painkiller addiction, the poll shows.

In sharp contrast to the crack coc aine and heroin addictions that plagued American cities in past decades and disproportionately affected racial and ethnic minorities, abuse of pain medicine today is more common among whites, people who live in suburbs and those from high-income households, the survey shows.


I agree with these findings too. I happen to know a few people who abuse pain pills on the regular. I also know someone who has died of a heroin overdose, but his addiction started with pills.


In addition to rampant abuse of opioid medicines intended for patients with extreme pain, use of heroin -- derived from opium -- has soared. Drug overdoses have surpassed motor vehicle crashes as the leading cause of deaths from injury in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


Yikes. Now that we've taken that all in. Let's look at the political response. BEFORE drug epidemics affecting minority groups would just result on a crackdown on the War on Drugs. Yet strangely politicians (even Republicans) seem more concerned with this epidemic than previously. I wonder why...


The demographics behind the crisis may explain why the political establishment is responding differently than it did to past drug addiction outbreaks. Relatively affluent, educated white voters in suburbs, small towns and rural areas have more influence with politicians. Presidential candidates campaigning in places like New Hampshire -- which has a significant drug addiction problem -- are sounding compassionate notes, not emphasizing criminal crackdowns on people who have substance use problems or blaming cultural decay.


Yea, I know I'm going to get a lot of hate for the phrase I'm about to say, but it's white privilege. Plain and simple. Though this isn't just conservative white privilege, it is just complete white privilege. Liberal and conservative alike. The desire to end this epidemic humanely is a bi-partisan thing (though they do disagree on if it should be states or the federal government taking care of it).


Democratic candidates Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders have emphasized expanding access to treatment for people with substance use problems in their campaign platforms. On the Republican side, candidates have highlighted personal connections to the issue, including Carly Fiorina speaking of her step-daughter's death from drug use and Chris Christie telling voters of his daughter's struggles with addiction.



The public believes the government has a responsibility to stem the worsening painkiller addiction problem, but is divided, 36 percent to 39 percent, over whether the federal government or states should take the lead. The results roughly fall along partisan lines, with Republicans more likely to favor state action and Democrats to support federal interventions, the Kaiser Family Foundation poll found.


I mean it's great that politicians are FINALLY starting to notice the creeping drug problem in our country, it's just a shame that it had to hit so close to home to these politicians for them to take notice. I'VE been screaming about the war on drugs being unfair and unjust since I was in high school.




posted on Nov, 24 2015 @ 07:53 AM
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What a vicious cycle. Big Pharma pushes out their medications (pills), which turns into an addiction to many from what I've witnessed. Then turns around and makes more money off the addict in their rehabilitation center, while feeding them different drugs for treatment for addiction. Which in turn, causes another addiction. The main treatment for opiate addiction is Suboxone I believe. You can't just make this **** up.



posted on Nov, 24 2015 @ 07:54 AM
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a reply to: amicktd

So what do you think about this then?


Republicans were less likely to believe naloxone, or Narcan, which can prevent overdose death if administered quickly, should be available without a prescription. Sixty-three percent of respondents approve of the "good Samaritan" laws -- designed to encourage drug users to seek medical help for other users without fear of arrest -- including majorities of Democrats and Republicans.



posted on Nov, 24 2015 @ 08:03 AM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t

You had me until this line:




Yea, I know I'm going to get a lot of hate for the phrase I'm about to say, but it's white privilege. Plain and simple. Though this isn't just conservative white privilege, it is just complete white privilege. Liberal and conservative alike. The desire to end this epidemic humanely is a bi-partisan thing (though they do disagree on if it should be states or the federal government taking care of it).


Sorry, but its not white privilege. Its economic privilege. You can't argue white privilege when you have a black president and black upper middle class in every state.

What does that say for the poor white families? [I don't mean 'those poor white families' I mean those broke ass white families?] because they are in the same place as poor blacks. It's economic disparity, not racial.

And a lot of perceived racism is like this, people think white privilege but its economic privilege. Show me a rich black person or black family or any ethnic group actually, in the upper brackets of society who have to deal with any institutional racism? You wont, because most everything can be bought these days. And there are laws/regulations on the books supposedly meant to reduce racism yet increase it against other racial groups [institutional racism] e.g. affirmative action.

Call it rich privilege or poorism, but at least call it for what it is. Yes, many ethnic groups are economically depressed, but you will find the same thing in trailer park full of white people.
edit on 24-11-2015 by boncho because: (no reason given)

edit on 24-11-2015 by boncho because: (no reason given)

edit on 24-11-2015 by boncho because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 24 2015 @ 08:05 AM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t


Yea, I know I'm going to get a lot of hate for the phrase I'm about to say, but it's white privilege. Plain and simple. Though this isn't just conservative white privilege, it is just complete white privilege. Liberal and conservative alike.


No hate from me... but I profoundly disagree. This isn't white privilege. It's Big Pharma privilege. Their house of cards is starting to collapse from its own weight.

The only drug I can think of for which the Black population was disproportionately prosecuted/persecuted is crack coc aine.

On the other hand, Big Pharma was never involved with marijuana (except its criminalization), coc aine, meth, etc. Opioids are the only prescription drug with a street drug counterpart, which Big Pharma has handed out like candy, with little consideration for the consequences, and now the chickens are coming home to roost. Unfortunately, addiction is not their worry. Nope. They like having folks dependent on their drugs. They're just pissed that folks are finding another source.

So yes, yes indeed... let's do something about this, all bipartisan like, and get these folks back under Big Pharma's thumb. They have more drugs for this donchaknow!

Something tells me that psychiatric drugs will be next....



posted on Nov, 24 2015 @ 08:05 AM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t
This time a S&F for this thread. Unusual coming from me , huh ? I have personally lived through this though. With the medical issue I have had , between the surgeries pain pills were a "must have" . Now living life without them is tough.





posted on Nov, 24 2015 @ 08:16 AM
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Here's my solution.

1. End the War on Drugs. This doesn't mean that everything should be legal; just that the insanely harsh punishments for drug use should be eliminated. Many of the laws on alcohol & tobacco usage would now include the other drugs.

2. Treat drug addiction as an illness. Have medically certified & administered safehouses where drug addicts can receive safe dosages of the drugs they're addicted to. These drugs can be used in a broader program of rehabilitating the addict & helping them ween themselves off of the drug. (I forgot which country has a similar program to this. Maybe Portugal?) The goal would be to eliminate the epidemic of harmful addictions while encouraging responsible recreational & medicinal use.

3. Legalize marijuana & make a deal with the public; lay off the harsher stuff & we'll allow marijuana with nearly no restrictions (except in cases that directly can harm others, like intoxicated driving). This means no restrictions on growing, transporting, recreational or medicinal use, etc. The amount of restrictions could be loosened in proportion to the reduction of usage of harsher drugs (as in, the amount of allowable crops will increase by 5% for every 5% decrease in abuse of the other drugs). my intention with this would be to give the public specific incentives to follow the plan, as well as to starve organized crime of their major revenue sources.

Perhaps this would include a cheap "marijuana license", that requires a few classes on how to safely grow and use it (for medicinal & recreational purposes). And an advanced license for people wanting to make oils & other products for sale, kind of like a liquor license.

4. Have a ridiculously large amount of unbiased tests to see which drugs have medicinal uses, in what doses, the side effects at specific dosages, and the such. Depending on the results, perhaps there could be additional "coca licenses", "amphetamine licenses", etc? The findings of these tests would be included in the licensing exams.

The theory would be that all users would have unbiased scientific data about their substance(s) of choice, so they could all be responsible users. Things like "Criming while High" would be a new class of crime which would include punishments like license suspensions, required classes (like traffic school with speeding tickets), etc.

Ok, that's all I've got. lol I'm not a user & I don't think about this stuff much, so maybe I missed some things. But I just think it's stupid to punish people for growing plants. That's just dumb. Poison ivy & poison oak are dangerous, apples have cyanide precursors in their seeds, and tree nuts can kill people with allergies to them. So should we arrest people for having them on their property too?



posted on Nov, 24 2015 @ 08:31 AM
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a reply to: boncho

Well we may disagree on the type of privilege, but I think we both agree that privilege itself is the key variable here that is making the politicians anxious about this issue.



posted on Nov, 24 2015 @ 08:35 AM
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originally posted by: Krazysh0t
a reply to: boncho

Well we may disagree on the type of privilege, but I think we both agree that privilege itself is the key variable here that is making the politicians anxious about this issue.

A lot of times, people only care about something after it hits close to home. Addicts are seen as "bad" until they find out a loved one is one.



posted on Nov, 24 2015 @ 08:35 AM
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originally posted by: amicktd
What a vicious cycle. Big Pharma pushes out their medications (pills), which turns into an addiction to many from what I've witnessed. Then turns around and makes more money off the addict in their rehabilitation center, while feeding them different drugs for treatment for addiction. Which in turn, causes another addiction. The main treatment for opiate addiction is Suboxone I believe. You can't just make this **** up.


You are so right!

I have a brother in law that got addicted to pain pills, then got hooked on oxy and is now taking suboxone to over come his addiction to pills. It's crazy!

Pain pills ruined his whole life. He lost his job, his license his home....he now lives with his parents and rarely even leaves his room.

It's so sad because the guy really had his act together when I married into the family. He rarely even drank alcohol. So, it's crazy to see the state of his life now.



posted on Nov, 24 2015 @ 08:36 AM
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originally posted by: enlightenedservant
Here's my solution.

1. End the War on Drugs. This doesn't mean that everything should be legal; just that the insanely harsh punishments for drug use should be eliminated. Many of the laws on alcohol & tobacco usage would now include the other drugs.


I'm all for decriminalization only of the harsher drugs. We can still arrest people for selling them. I have no problems with that.


2. Treat drug addiction as an illness. Have medically certified & administered safehouses where drug addicts can receive safe dosages of the drugs they're addicted to. These drugs can be used in a broader program of rehabilitating the addict & helping them ween themselves off of the drug. (I forgot which country has a similar program to this. Maybe Portugal?) The goal would be to eliminate the epidemic of harmful addictions while encouraging responsible recreational & medicinal use.


THIS! So much this! Many addicts are scared to come forward for help because they fear the government reprisal for asking for help.


3. Legalize marijuana & make a deal with the public; lay off the harsher stuff & we'll allow marijuana with nearly no restrictions (except in cases that directly can harm others, like intoxicated driving). This means no restrictions on growing, transporting, recreational or medicinal use, etc. The amount of restrictions could be loosened in proportion to the reduction of usage of harsher drugs (as in, the amount of allowable crops will increase by 5% for every 5% decrease in abuse of the other drugs). my intention with this would be to give the public specific incentives to follow the plan, as well as to starve organized crime of their major revenue sources.

Perhaps this would include a cheap "marijuana license", that requires a few classes on how to safely grow and use it (for medicinal & recreational purposes). And an advanced license for people wanting to make oils & other products for sale, kind of like a liquor license.


It should be treated like alcohol and tobacco is.


4. Have a ridiculously large amount of unbiased tests to see which drugs have medicinal uses, in what doses, the side effects at specific dosages, and the such. Depending on the results, perhaps there could be additional "coca licenses", "amphetamine licenses", etc? The findings of these tests would be included in the licensing exams.

The theory would be that all users would have unbiased scientific data about their substance(s) of choice, so they could all be responsible users. Things like "Criming while High" would be a new class of crime which would include punishments like license suspensions, required classes (like traffic school with speeding tickets), etc.


Whoa! Unbiased? I think we are getting to the land of fantasy now. Nothing involving the government is ever unbiased... But I see what you are saying, allowing scientists better access to these drugs is only a good thing. The DEA and its scheduling program is dumb. They've basically said that the science on these drugs is finished and will NEVER change therefore no testing needs to ever be done on them. Such thinking is the exact opposite of scientific.


Ok, that's all I've got. lol I'm not a user & I don't think about this stuff much, so maybe I missed some things. But I just think it's stupid to punish people for growing plants. That's just dumb. Poison ivy & poison oak are dangerous, apples have cyanide precursors in their seeds, and tree nuts can kill people with allergies to them. So should we arrest people for having them on their property too?


Yep. Exactly.
edit on 24-11-2015 by Krazysh0t because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 24 2015 @ 08:36 AM
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originally posted by: Gothmog
a reply to: Krazysh0t
This time a S&F for this thread. Unusual coming from me , huh ? I have personally lived through this though. With the medical issue I have had , between the surgeries pain pills were a "must have" . Now living life without them is tough.




Awesome. It sucks that it hits close to home, but you know what I mean here. We are treating these people the wrong way and things need to change.



posted on Nov, 24 2015 @ 08:48 AM
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originally posted by: Krazysh0t

originally posted by: Gothmog
a reply to: Krazysh0t
This time a S&F for this thread. Unusual coming from me , huh ? I have personally lived through this though. With the medical issue I have had , between the surgeries pain pills were a "must have" . Now living life without them is tough.




Awesome. It sucks that it hits close to home, but you know what I mean here. We are treating these people the wrong way and things need to change.


Yeah , only leaves you with 2 choices. 1 very easy and one tough as Hades . You dont get medication that counteracts the addiction as you would with the illegal drugs .



posted on Nov, 24 2015 @ 08:53 AM
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originally posted by: Krazysh0t
a reply to: amicktd

So what do you think about this then?


Republicans were less likely to believe naloxone, or Narcan, which can prevent overdose death if administered quickly, should be available without a prescription. Sixty-three percent of respondents approve of the "good Samaritan" laws -- designed to encourage drug users to seek medical help for other users without fear of arrest -- including majorities of Democrats and Republicans.


I don't know enough about naloxone to make an educated opinion on that. But, I believe it's an opiate blocker right? I feel if it can't be abused and can save an addicts life just by having some handy it wouldn't hurt anyone other than the addicts pocket. I also believe people shouldn't be punished for possession. Now there is another side to it when it comes to these harder drugs. There is a lot of crime that surrounds these addictions. For example: Theft, burglary, assault, robbery, vandalism, etc. I actually have a cousin that is going through this exact situation. I have offered help time after time. I have offered to pay for rehab and offered him a place to stay to get clean under my rules, but the help is never accepted. A lot of addicts don't want help though, the only real thing that can make a change for some are themselves.



posted on Nov, 24 2015 @ 08:55 AM
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originally posted by: MagesticEsoteric

originally posted by: amicktd
What a vicious cycle. Big Pharma pushes out their medications (pills), which turns into an addiction to many from what I've witnessed. Then turns around and makes more money off the addict in their rehabilitation center, while feeding them different drugs for treatment for addiction. Which in turn, causes another addiction. The main treatment for opiate addiction is Suboxone I believe. You can't just make this **** up.


You are so right!

I have a brother in law that got addicted to pain pills, then got hooked on oxy and is now taking suboxone to over come his addiction to pills. It's crazy!

Pain pills ruined his whole life. He lost his job, his license his home....he now lives with his parents and rarely even leaves his room.

It's so sad because the guy really had his act together when I married into the family. He rarely even drank alcohol. So, it's crazy to see the state of his life now.


Yep, same with my cousin. Started with pain medications, then heroine, now back and forth between suboxone and heroine. It's ridiculous, especially knowing how motivated this guy was in life before all this.



posted on Nov, 24 2015 @ 08:57 AM
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The drug pushers(big pharm) have finally found a way to expand their market beyond the illegal use of the urban areas and the poor.

Thanks to their pill pushing thugs(doctors), and the insurance racket. They are able to push these to the wealthy virtually free to the end user, while charging huge prices to insurance companies.



posted on Nov, 24 2015 @ 08:59 AM
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It's amazing the things they try to offer pain pills for now, I've had several offers of a months worth of pills for minor pain that would only last a few days.

They never could understand why I refused, even writing the script anyway "just in case" i changed my mind and wanted to pick them up. No charge to me, of course.



posted on Nov, 24 2015 @ 09:10 AM
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there's these addicts they like what they like, hate the rest. i see heroine addicts can't take ibuprofin, refuse ritalin. alcoholics can't stand any over the counter or doctor prescribed. now we got a new class start with the pharma and then something happens lose insurance or they refuse to pay copay goes up something. next thing you know they shooting in the arm move to legs in between toes on the streets family wondering where pa or ma.

sucks, but only the strong survive. you can't let that monster creep up on ya stay a shadow, gotta consume it not the products, own it not the apple. think we get some wise left after the dust settles, everyone else devolve or gun in the head.

oh one more thing, that throwing monies at a problem gig doesn't work. look at education. at some point you gotta realize it's just people are dumb. leave them be, shun them, pity if you must, but don't get all gooey and feel that they can get better by giving them things. that's a high order of foolishness especially on addicts. give addicts drugs? lol bunch of dummies there. addicts play you, fool! man, sounds like kids not know the lifestyle much.
edit on 24-11-2015 by ringdingdong because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 24 2015 @ 09:24 AM
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This is a good read, and I think it can add to the conversation on it's own.

I might come back and add some personal experience when I have more time (and will) to type it all out.



posted on Nov, 24 2015 @ 09:40 AM
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Someone who might be me has been afflicted for years with cronic severe pain due to several accidents and a diagnosis of Parkinson's AND ankylosis. On top of physical trauma TWO diseases are raviging his body, one that causes muscle rigidity along with constant movement, paired with one that causes break down and eventual fusion of one's joints. He is DEPENDANT on pain relief to even have some sort of normal yet degraded function in life for even the smallest of tasks. For example, he has to take a break while shampooing his hair, orscrewing in a lightbulb becomes a feared task. If in his shoes most would choose relief, most would choose physical dependence on a drug over the inability to even move. You would choose as normal a life as you could find.

Now while you are wearing his shoes, consider the choices you are left with. You have a compassionate Doctor that has been treating you for 5plus years. At the start of his choice to begins Long term Opiate treatment plan he tells you that he feels it is what is best for you his patient. He also says that once it begins you cannot just stop taking the meds without withdrawal symptoms that would be intensified because of you physical condition. This is not a "Pill farm" and you were not seeking pain pills, your physician recommended the treatment and has advised you the benefits out weigh the risks. You begin a treatment that he says will likely continue for the rest of your life. By the way, you are not 70 years old like the average Parkinson's patient but barely 35.

Finally some relief! You can move again, you can painlessly hug your kids. Sex becomes something that you don't fear anymore. You aren't perfect but you have some sort of life again, when you thought that was over. Basically, you are happy, things are looking up. Relief!

This continues for several years. You don't abuse your meds, you take them as prescribed, you have never had an issue of any sort, for more than 5 years. Life isn't good,but it is OK, and you are good with that. But, during that 5 years your Government took control of the spot that produces most of the world's Heroin. It is money to be made. Soldiers now guard the Poppy fields, instead of burn them down. Changes have to be made.

It's time for your monthly visit to your Doctor. Suprise, the "Medical Review Board has made some changes, and to stay out of trouble I am stopping all long term pain treatments, this is the last time I will be prescribing this med, Have you taken Xanax before? Some people say it helps with their pain. I could start you on that." (Xanax is addictive as a benzodiazipam, that includes seizures with withdrawal) But what happened to"You can't just stop taking it?!" What are you supposed to do now?

Even if you could find them on the street demand just went way up, as this wasn't just one Doctor, it was ALL OF THEM AT THE SAME TIME?!?! How convienient, Your Government just gained control of a bunch of Heroin. After the CIA and Crack ordeal would you put it past them. Do you really think they played no part? Heroin is expensive and hard to find right? Well, it was.. Now... It isDIRT cheap and everywhere! It is here because they brought it here.

Sure, now that it is their kids being affected it is an epidemic and has to be stopped. Thing is it never had to start. Instead of scaring Doctors away from treatments that can help people, programs could be developed to better track meds or any other option would have benefited society much more than sending sick people to the streets to find relief.

The war on drugs is this giant corrupt machine, oiled by the misery of the poor. Our local Methadone clinic is minimum 11$ a day and is cash only, and that is after you pay the initial about 100$ to get started. Which is what his Doctor recommended. It is a vicious circle with vicious being the key word.

I believe there was a plan, an agenda to the crack down on prescriptions, that goes beyond race or class, that has lead to this whole mess.



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