Prescription Drug Abuse Essay

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Prescription Drug Abuse Amy Small SOC305: Crime and Society Instructor Cari Lynn Beecham-Bautista May 19, 2014 Prescription Drug Abuse Prescription drugs are a problem that is ever growing. The amount of crimes that are committed due to the rise of prescription drug abuse is becoming larger and larger by the day. In 2010, there were 2.4 million opioid abusers that were actually documented, as only 60% of users claimed that they received their prescription from a physician (Kirshner, Ginsburg, Snyder Sulmasy, 2014). Even inside prisons, prescription abuse is still a common problem. Some inmates are addicted to prescription drugs prior to incarceration, while some become addicted while in prison due to trades of other goods such as tattoos, clothing, prison funds, and even prostitution (Pilkinton, Pilkinton, 2014). If inmates are addicted to prescription medication, the odds of them being free from drug use in the event that they are released from prison are very slim without having further treatment for the addiction. This leads to opiate clinic usage, frequent visits to the doctor’s office, or illegal purchase of these prescriptions (Pilkinton, Pilkinton, 2014). There are many problems that come along with prescription drugs. Not only are they highly addictive, but they are also easily accessible (Kirshner, Ginsburg, Snyder Sulmasy, 2014). 55% of users claimed that they received the pain pill, tranquilizer, or stimulant from a friend for free, while only 17.3% actually received their prescription from one doctor (Kirshner, Ginsburg, Snyder Sulmasy, 2014). The problem isn’t just street based, however. It is also prominent in prison systems and prescription drugs are often used as some sort of payment for services inside the prison systems, even if the inmate isn’t in any type of need for the prescription drug (Pilkinton, Pilkinton, 2014). Crimes such as

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