POSTED: Wednesday, December 19, 2012 - 7:09pm
UPDATED: Wednesday, December 26, 2012 - 5:45am
Tyler,TX — Nearly half a million of emergency room visits were from people abusing painkillers. It's a big problem in our country.
Some painkiller users are taking them as intended and some are taking them for other reasons without thinking about the side effects.
Reports say, highly addictive painkillers such as Vicodin, Oxycotin, Opana and Methadone are a rising health concern among the health professional community.
Painkillers are very easy to get even though you don't have a prescription. People seeking painkillers get them from friends and family members.
Reports say, prescription painkillers have killed more Americans than cocaine and heroin combined.
A pharmacist tells KETK,
"Prescription painkillers especially narcotic painkillers are extremely potent medications, people that are prescribed those should be using those according to the dosages," says David Davis, Pharmacy Manager, Good's Medicine Chest in Tyler.
Davis tells KETK,
Some people take matters into their own hands, taking pills excessively more than what their doctor prescribed, or in different ways.
"Instead of taking them by mouth, they will grind them up, they will take them nasally...snorting them, they'll actually even melt them down and inject them," says David Davis, Pharmacy Manager, Good's Medicine Chest in Tyler.
Davis says, Painkillers are commonly used to get a sense of well-being, to feel better, even when the pills are not prescribed for them.
This is when the problems start.
"They start doing that and they're actually abusing their medications at that point and they can run into a situation where they can overdose and end up in the hospital," says David Davis, Pharmacy Manager, Good's Medicine Chest in Tyler.
According to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, 100 people die from painkiller overdoses every day in the United States.