The misuse and abuse of prescription drugs has reached epidemic proportions in recent years, yet many individuals still believe, incorrectly, that their use is without risk. This book explores those risks as well as controversies surrounding this public health issue.
Prescription drugs are powerful tools that can be used to treat a variety of ailments, from pain to anxiety to insomnia. Their potency and perceived safety also make them targets for abuse. The misuse of prescription drugs can have dire health consequences for individuals and high economic costs for society, among other dangers.
A part of Greenwood's Health and Medical Issues Today series, this book identifies prescription drugs that are abused and the consequences such abuse can have for both individuals and society, and discusses the many questions relating to how to address this public health issue. Part I explores the current magnitude of the prescription drug abuse epidemic in the United States, which drugs are most frequently abused, how individuals obtain these medications, and the consequences of abuse. Part II delves into the controversies surrounding the topic, including the roles that doctors and "Big Pharma" play and legal issues regarding prosecution of prescription drug abusers. Part III provides a variety of useful materials, including case studies, a timeline of critical events, and a directory of resources.
Profiles the most commonly abused prescription drugs, explaining how each one can affect the mind and body and lead to physical and/or psychological addiction
Examines key issues related to prescription drug abuse, such as prescriber responsibility and societal attitudes toward this form of drug abuse
Offers illuminating case studies that highlight key ideas and debates discussed in the book through engaging real-world scenarios
Provides readers with a helpful Directory of Resources to guide their search for additional information