Prescription painkillers can be sourced from two places. One is from drug dealers on the street. Buying prescription pills, making dirty deals with pharmacists, buying imitation drugs from manufacturers- however dealers get their prescription painkiller drugs, they are able to sell them illegally. The other option for getting prescription painkillers is not illegal. In fact, it is a common practice people incorporate into their daily lives on a regular basis. Doctors are a primary source for providing prescription painkillers. Many of the stories written about people’s experience with addiction to prescription painkillers starts innocently with a prescription written by a doctor. Some patients have abused their medications. The dose the doctor wrote wasn’t quite enough, so they decided to take a pill or two extra- against doctor’s orders. Experiencing significant pain relief and some intensive warming effects makes the high amount of dosage preferable to what the doctor write. Patients get a higher dose. Patients don’t get a higher dose. Regardless, the amount of drugs continues to increase as the addiction becomes increasingly intense.
Overdose deaths due to prescription painkillers have been steadily rising in parts of Ireland and throughout the EU, as well as around the world. Patients have become completely addicted to prescription painkillers, which are mostly opioids. Opioids are morphine based, coming from the same original substance as heroin- the opium poppy plant. Opioid painkillers work by trigger the brain’s opioid response system, which is what causes pain relief. In high doses, the medications cause numbness, analgesia, and euphoria. Creating a strong combination of effects in the brain it doesn’t take much exposure to opioid abuse or misuse to become addicted. However, the curious and dangerous thing about prescription painkiller addiction is people who take prescription painkillers and do not abuse the drug, do not get addicted. They simply develop a tolerance to the drug. Prescription painkillers have in part created this global epidemic of addiction because they were not designed to work. Drugs like Oxycontin do not live up to their 12 hour coverage of pain the medication was so heavily advertised for. Doctors prescribed higher doses without their patients abusing the medication. Continuing to take medication as prescribed, the dependency simply got worse for patients until they became completely addicted.