Recently the state of New York has been cracking down on prescription painkiller abuse. The government has been working on increasing regulations in order to prevent and stop addicts from getting more fuel for their addiction. According to the Saratogian News in an article called “$15 Million Sought for Drug Addiction Treatment Programs,” this increase in prescription painkiller regulations has made it more difficult for doctors to prescribe medications to their patients unless it is absolutely necessary. It has also made it difficult for addicts to get their hands on more painkillers for their addiction.
Lawmakers predicted that the increase in regulations would make those who were addicted to painkillers start the withdrawal process. Lawmakers predicted that addicts would check into rehab or suffer through withdrawal once they could no longer get their hands on the prescription narcotics. Addicts, somewhat surprised by lawmakers, have been switching from prescription painkillers to heroin. Heroin is easier and cheaper to come by than painkillers with the increased regulations.
Now more than ever, there are people dying from their drug addictions. Since the increase in prescription medication regulations, heroin overdoses are becoming more and more common. Addicts who wish to get help with their addiction often cannot afford treatment and their insurance companies in many case do not cover treatment anyway. Addicts who cannot quit on their own are abandoned to figure it out for themselves.
Lawmakers in New York are working to fix this problem by dedicating fifteen million to use to help the addicts of New York to afford the long term inpatient care these addicts need. When addicts are denied help with their addiction treatment there is only a small chance they will be able to successfully withdraw on their own. There is a reason you don’t see drug addicts dying of old age.
Substance Abuse Prevention in New York
Prevention is going to take a lot more than laws, regulations and funding. Addiction prevention needs to start at the source. Many addicts agree that they would have never have touched drugs in the first place had they known how their life would end up once they became addicted.
Addiction ruins more than just physical health. Addiction destroys families and ruins lives. Addiction takes away hopes and dreams. Addiction will take every penny out of the addict’s wallet and shackle the addict to the drug.
Raising awareness on the issue and preventing addicts from using in the first place is the only way addiction can really be prevented. Drug use often starts with marijuana or alcohol and leads to something more harmful. Addicts generally agree that their addiction started small and seemed controllable and then all of a sudden it was out of their hands.
The problem can be prevented. It can also be recovered from. Increasing awareness of drugs and their harmful side effects and making rehabilitation programs accessible is the best place to start. Addicts who can still control their use should be made aware of the harmful effects that continued use will have on their lives. People who have not tried drugs before should also know how these substances really affect the body.