Fatal Prescription: Women and Painkiller Overdoses

In EveryDayHealth.com, they report that more women than ever are dying from painkiller overdoses.  This article was written by Dr. Sanjay Gupta and asks, “How can you spot signs of drug abuse in a loved one?

Americans’ abuse of prescription painkillers has reached epidemic proportions, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC estimates that 15,000 people die every year in this country from overdoses involving opioid or narcotic pain relievers.

While men are more likely to die from painkiller abuse, the number of deaths among women was up 400 percent between 1999 and 2010. “More women are dying at rates that we have never seen before,” said CDC Director Dr. Thomas Frieden. “Stopping this epidemic in women — and men — is everyone’s business.”

More on this article: everydayhealth.com

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6 thoughts on “Fatal Prescription: Women and Painkiller Overdoses

  1. anxietybug88 says:

    I have to wonder if the higher percentage in women is due to menstrual pains that demand higher doses of painkillers. I don’t know how often endometriosis goes undiagnosed, but had I left mine that way, I would have been swallowing painkillers left and right and would have probably overdosed.

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    • cherished79 says:

      Good thought, that would be a women’s issue for sure; you just want to stop the pain. I used to use Tylenol 3’s for migraines, but they really don’t work, and thank goodness I didn’t get into the Oxy crap, or I would be a complete mess right now, and still have the migraines. (I can thank my family doc for her wise thinking). It’s hellish dealing with pain, what do you do?
      Thanks for your comment.

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      • anxietybug88 says:

        I do a mixture of yoga, acetaminophen or ibuprofen (light doses, so I don’t get addicted or dependent), heating pads in targeted areas, ice packs and Biofreeze (which only works if it’s more of a surface pain). Drinking lots of water also helps because some of the symptoms of dehydration include pain or muscle tension. Decreasing my stress helps too, as a lot of my pain comes from that.

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        • cherished79 says:

          Yoga I’ve only looked into once, and it was a disaster. I was so overweight (close to 300 lbs), I couldn’t do most of the exercises and the instructor wasn’t much help. Should look into it again since I’ve lost a lot of weight, a bit hesitant though. The heating pad is an excellent suggestion, and just at family docs today and she said the same thing (you should be a doctor!).
          Thanks, good suggestions and comment.

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  2. Pheonix says:

    I avoid painkillers unless I can’t function anymore, and thankfully I’ve never had chronic pain. Even so, I get it. With the demands of keeping the house clean, taking care of your child, cooking, and working, I can only imagine the pressure to keep upping your pain medicine dose if you DO have chronic pain. My heart goes out to them.

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    • cherished79 says:

      Chronic pain is just what it is, chronic. Wears you out and unfortunately you take more and more meds to attempt to ease/end the pain. I have been warned with meds not to take too many for my migraines, as they can actually cause ‘rebound’ migraines, but you just think, “if I take a couple of extra pills maybe this will finally kill the pain”. Usually it doesn’t, becomes a habit and a vicious circle. Really difficult. The only other option for me, after about 7+ days with a migraine. I head to the dreaded emergency, and there I’m greeted with rolled eyes and “sit over there, we’ll call you”, because I just have a headache.

      Thanks for stopping by to comment. 🙂

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