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What Led To The Opiate Epidemic? 

Marketing efforts in the early 2000s when Oxycontin was fronted as the best option to treat chronic pain marked the beginning of what is now a countrywide opiate epidemic. Leading pharmaceutical companies misled people to believe that opiates were a safe way to treat pain even though that was far from the truth. Before anyone could realize it, people were taking to this new method and by doing so, they were getting into a crisis that would later prove too difficult to correct. The desire by leading hospitals to be more aggressive in managing chronic pain only added to the faster spread of the use of opiates among various groups.

Although those who were at the forefront in marketing opiates deny it today, there is no doubt that hospitals that were reluctant to use opiates were threatened with censure. In fact, patients were given the option to complain to the State Boards if they felt that the doctors were not doing enough to manage pain. Because of this, even the physicians who were reluctant to prescribe opiates had no option but to allow their patients to use the. Nobody envisaged that this would be the beginning of problems that would be quite difficult to reverse as is being experienced today.

Even though doctors are now the scapegoats, anyone who has been witnessing the unfolding of events can easily tell that they have been forced to prescribe more than they would recommend. By prescribing opiates in increasing amounts, they have ended up becoming pushers in the epidemic that is being experienced now. There is no doubt that most of the events that have led to the current epidemic have been well documented by those who had reservations about the use of these treatment methods, even though there are those who would like to sweep everything under the carpet.

There also are also other factors that have led to the current situation. One of them is that the society prefers instant gratification and that is exactly what opiates provide. Almost the entire population wants a pill that will help them to fix the pain instantly and so, they do not see the need to seek any other alternatives. Even though almost everyone knows that almost every medication has a risk attached to it, they prefer not to think about that and so, they end up drowning more into opiates as they become helplessly dependent on them.

It is common to see patients walking into a clinic with back pain and expect to walk out with a prescription for the pain. If anyone tries to tell them that they need more back strengthening exercises, they would have none of it. They prefer pills because according to them, it is an instant solution. They world also not want to go for physical therapy no matter how much they are persuaded. Tell anyone with joint pains to lose weight and they will prefer to swallow pills instated of that. It is exactly why the opiates epidemic is growing at an alarming rate.


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