Driving Under The Influence of Prescription Drugs

drugged-drivingWith more people than ever taking prescription narcotics, the likelihood that people will drive under the influence is that much greater. Even though prescription drugs are legal, it does not remotely mean that they are safe to drive with in one’s system. Developed nations have requirements that prescription bottles warn of the dangers of operating heavy machinery while taking the drug. Unfortunately, a number of people choose to drive despite the warning labels, meaning that the labels are not a strong deterrent.

New research suggest that warning labels are not enough and most people drive while under the influence of the prescription drugs, ScienceDaily reports. The findings will be presented at the Tackling Drug Driving in Queensland: Leading Research and Contextual Issues symposium in Brisbane, Australia.

Use Care When Operating A Vehicle

Road safety researcher Dr Tanya Smyth, from the Queensland University of Technology’s (QUT) Centre for Accident Research & Road Safety, said that driving while taking some prescription drugs can be just as dangerous as driving under the influence of illegal drugs. Smythe found that warning labels and pharmacist consultations were the chief systems used for controlling drugged driving, according to the article. Such methods are ineffective when you consider that prescription drug users have to self-assess their impairment, a subjective gauge to say the least.

“The biggest problem is that research has shown drivers are unable to accurately self-assess their impairment when taking medication and are overconfident in assessing their abilities,” said Smythe.

May Cause Drowsiness

In the 21st Century, many prescriptions are filled online and are sent to people’s home. This means that a number of patients are not being consulted with by pharmacists. Dr Smyth said prescription drug users were not receiving important advice from pharmacists, the article reports.

“This limits their exposure to verbal warnings, and increases the likelihood of people having to rely on labels.”

Smyth added that more research is required to fully understand how medications affect individuals.

“Some medications can cause a variety of impairments including drowsiness, increased reaction time, loss of mental concentration, shakiness and affect coordination and these all make it unsafe to drive, cycle or use machinery”.

___________________________________________________________________
Please contact Next Step Intervention if you are struggling with prescription drugs. We can assist you in finding the right treatment which will help you start your journey of recovery.

College Students Find It Easy To Obtain Prescription Drugs

prescription-drugsAround the country the use of prescription stimulants is quite common on college campuses, used with or without a prescription. Students will use drugs, such as Ritalin or Adderall, for more focus and energy while studying. While prescription stimulants can give a student an edge during finals, the drugs can be habit forming and lead to the use of other narcotics.

The selling or use of prescription drugs is illegal without a prescription from one’s doctor; nevertheless, use with of drugs without a prescription happens quite frequently. In fact, a new survey has found that college students in the U.S. have little trouble illegally acquiring prescription drugs on campus, HealthDay reports.

The 2015 College Prescription Drug Study

Researchers at Ohio State University found that 70 percent of the more than 3,900 survey respondents reported that obtaining medications without a prescription was somewhat “easy or very easy.” The data comes from students at six public and two private colleges and universities in five states across the country, and included undergraduate, graduate and professional students.

The data showed that about 18 percent of undergraduates misused prescription stimulants, according to the article. What’s more, 83 percent obtained the drugs from their friends. While prescription stimulant misuse was the most common, their survey showed a significant amount of prescription opioid misuse.

More Than Just Stimulants

The researchers found that 10 percent of undergraduates misused prescription opioids, and about one third of them reported that acquiring the drugs was “easy or very easy.” About 9 percent misused sedatives, and 44 percent said it was “easy or very easy” to obtain the drugs.

“Overall, 1 in 4 undergraduates reported that they used prescription pain medications, sedatives or stimulants for nonmedical reasons in their lifetimes,” said study author Anne McDaniel, associate director of research and data management at Ohio State University’s Center for the Study of Student Life, in a press release.

___________________________________________________________________

Please contact Next Step Intervention if you are struggling with prescription drugs. We can assist you in finding the right treatment which will help you start your journey of recovery.

DEA Crackdown On Prescription Opioid Narcotics

Operation-PillutedPeople in the United States consume the majority of prescription painkillers made worldwide, which has led to a prescription opioid epidemic. While efforts to curb the problem, such as prescription drug monitoring programs, have yielded some promising results, many addicts have turned to heroin, a cheaper and stronger alternative – creating a new problem. Nevertheless, the fight to end the prescription opioid crisis continues, and on Wednesday, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) announced the results of a four-state prescription drug crackdown, Reuters reports.

The DEAs “Operation Pilluted,” set its sights on the illegal distribution of prescription opioid narcotics. The operation yielded 280 arrests, including:

  • 22 Doctors and Pharmacists
  • $404,828 in Cash Seized
  • 202 Weapons
  • 51 Vehicles

“DEA is committed to reducing the destruction brought on by the trafficking and abuse of prescription drugs through aggressive criminal enforcement, robust administrative oversight, and strong relationships with other law enforcement agencies, the public, and the medical community,” said DEA Special Agent in Charge Keith Brown in a statement. “The doctors and pharmacists arrested in Operation Pilluted are nothing more than drug traffickers who prey on the addiction of others while abandoning the Hippocratic Oath adhered to faithfully by thousands of doctors and pharmacists each day across this country.”

Over the course of 15 months, agents involved in Operation Pilluted, observed and arrested people on federal and state criminal charges, according to the article. The operation was headed up by the DEA’s New Orleans Field Division, which resulted in the arrests of individuals in Louisiana, Arkansas, Alabama and Mississippi.

The south, arguably, has been hit the hardest by the prescription drug epidemic. Federal and state officials have been working tirelessly over the last several years to implement prescription drug monitoring programs aimed at doctor shoppers, and to shut down pill mills which were flooding the streets with powerful narcotics. Prescription drug companies have been urged to create abuse-resistant pain medications, drugs that make it more difficult for abusers to tamper with the medications.

The DEA called Operation Pilluted its largest-ever prescription drug operation.

If you are struggling with prescription opioids do not hesitate to call for help.

Help Can't Wait

Get Help Now