New Hampshire Prescription Drug Abuse Problems | Center for Addiction Recovery

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Painkiller Addiction Treatment in New HampshireNew Hampshire has been plagued with a massive amount of substance abuse problems with prescription drugs such as oxycodone, hydrocodone, and tramadol taking the lead. In 2012 the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), presented data on prescribing rates reporting that per 100 people; 71.7 prescriptions were written for opioid pain relievers, 19.6 prescriptions were written for long acting or extended release opioid pain relievers, and 6.1 prescriptions were written for high-dose opioid pain relievers.

These statistics place New Hampshire high above most states in the country for prescription rates of certain kinds of opioid painkillers, causing many calls-to-action for this ongoing problem. A crucial statistic that really stood out from the rest was one that stated that New Hampshire had the third highest prescribing rate in the nation for long acting or extended release opioid pain relievers. This alarming trend may be caused by wide spread addiction, doctor shopping, overprescribing, and over production or distribution of these kinds of opioid medications in hospitals, clinics, and even the streets. This class of drug is often associated with heroin, which is similar to opioids and painkiller medications, both known to be the most addictive and overdose-prone drugs.

Over and over again we hear that Prescription Monitoring Programs (PMP's) can educate health practitioners and state officials by revealing drug trends in patients and prescribers, helping to prevent potential abuse of these medications. But the question as to whether it PMP's will be a requirement in New Hampshire remains unanswered, or simply rejected. It is a matter of saving lives by catching the abuse before an overdose happens, or stopping an addiction before it is developed. Some states such as Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, and Florida are among the 37 states that have operational PMP's since 2010, but no legislation has ruled to make PMP's an official requirement for health practitioners. Despite these limitations and the long road ahead, state officials are urging communities and drug-awareness campaigns to continue reaching out to its residents, letting them know about the consequences of abusing prescription drugs and the need to seek treatment in case an addiction is established.

Although New Hampshire was one of the last states to introduce prescription drug monitoring programs, doctors are now being closely monitored and urged to inform their patients about the potential hazards of using opioid medications. Better training and education programs on preventing drug abuse and addiction are being developed to educate doctors, after all, it is the doctors' role to treat their patients for pain, and not deny them of that. Yes, opioids prescriptions will often get the job done, but this is a drug that needs to be closely monitored and patients need to be educated about the risks involved when using the drug being prescribed.

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