In the midst of all the chaos and tragedy caused by the heroin and painkiller epidemic our nation is currently facing, there appears to be a bit of good news.
According to the most recent National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), prescription painkiller use has dropped among adolescents. The report says that the number of teens who had abused opiate medications went from 3.2 percent down to 1.9 percent over the past dozen years.
While this may not seem like much, it represents about a 30% decline by comparison, which is very significant. Prescription painkillers are still claiming thousands of lives each year, so a decline is long overdue. If this holds steady among the adolescents, then in a few years the total adult population will see a decrease as well.
Some of the most abused painkillers have included Vicodin, OxyContin, Opana, Percocet and many others. These fall in either the hydrocodone or oxycodone categories, both of which are variations of synthetic opioids and have a very high potential for abuse and dependency.