Opioids

The protocol on prescribing opioids has changed for the better.

Two years ago, it was, “Here’s a prescription. Take it whenever you feel any pain. Oh, it’s just a painkiller. It’s just a bit stronger than ibuprofen, so take it in case the pain is a bit stronger.”

Nowadays, it’s “this is oxycodone. It’s different from ibuprofen in that it’s a narcotic.”

So it’s better. It still lacks the crucial words “opioid, extremely addictive, etc” and some stats on how many people develop an addiction after a certain number of pills and how many convert to heroin in under two years. Ideally, every patient would hear it verbally from a doctor (and in cases of surgery, BEFORE surgery), be given a brochure explaining this with pictures, and have a short resume attached to the bottle. This would be a real measure to battle the opioid epidemic. And it can all be done legislatively state by state. It should be done through hospitals, not pharma companies.

As you prepare to vote, ask your candidates if they are getting behind this kind of measures. Don’t take the empty verbiage about how they are heartbroken over the opioid crisis and will give money to help the victims without taking any measures to prevent drug companies from profiting even more from manufacturing new victims.

Chances of curing this addiction are extremely small. Only after two years of complete sobriety does an addict get a small chance of getting cured. The best way to go is to prevent it. Don’t believe anybody who is telling you otherwise. A candidate who talks about the opioid crisis and doesn’t discuss prevention is fucking with you. Don’t vote for the bastard.

Folks, I’m pretty intellectually sophisticated and very interested in the issue. Yet the first time I took an opioid, I had no idea what it was and how addictive it is. Nobody used the word opioid. It was all oxy-clonopotoxy, which meant nothing to me at the time, and I was fresh out of surgery and very groggy.

Even I didn’t know. What chance does a working class person, who trusts doctors implicitly, stand? Remember that we are talking about a person in pain who is already not thinking straight.

We all know how public opinion shifted on smoking. These days you’ve got to live in a literal cave not to know that smoking is very addictive and very unhealthy. But it’s easier with opioids because we don’t have to wait until lawsuits against companies settle. It can all be done through hospitals, raising awareness, online information campaigns, etc.

You have no idea how many people are still completely unaware of what the oft-discussed opioid epidemic entails and how you can get addicted after filling a legitimate prescription from a real doctor. Even people who have addicted relatives have told me that the addiction happened because their relatives didn’t have enough will power. It’s heartbreaking, folks. Whole villages around here dying out.

P. S. It would also be a good idea to let people sell back unused opioids (for destruction and not reuse, obviously) at a good price. Like a gun buyback thing.

P. P. S. I know everybody’s detests long posts and I try not to publish too many but in seeing this around me all the time, and it’s killing me.

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18 thoughts on “Opioids”

  1. In the first decade of this century it seemed as though they were really pushing these. I don’t have chronic pain or anything like that but they seemed to prescribe these for just about everything — things they’d have mentioned aspirin for up until then. I had so many opioids lying around it was ridiculous. Someone suggested selling to pay off debts but I didn’t dare. What I didn’t realize then was that pharma had probably convinced MDs and DDS types to overprescribe.

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    1. It’s definitely did convince doctors to overprescribe. Sam Quinones investigated the whole horrific scam brilliantly in his book Dreamland. The opioid crisis was absolutely manufactured callously and consciously.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Turns out there are opioid denialists. They get in groups and discuss how there is no opioid crisis, it’s all mass hysteria, and opioids are not addictive. Of course, they are all addicts.

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  2. The medical system really is part of the problem. I broke a toe two years ago and went to the emergency room expecting to leave with a splint or a cast or one of those black boot things. I did not ask for a pain killer. They put some tape on my toe and sent me home with a bottle of Percoset and no explanation of what it was or how strong it was. I took two of them and slept for a whole day. I decided that being awake and walking as little as possible was better than sleeping for ten days and didn’t take any more, but I’m sure some people would have kept taking them according to the doctor’s instructions.

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    1. And that’s exactly what happened to many of today’s addicts. A doctor gives them a bottle with instructions to take a pill every 4-6 hours until they run out. People do just that. It feels great. Once the bottle is done, they are already addicted.

      This is so wrong!!

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  3. Ha, I had four wisdom teeth taken out on Monday and they prescribed me these high grade horse tranquilizing opioids. I didn’t even need to take an ibuprofen, let alone these things. They scared me about all the pain I would feel after the procedure but I haven’t felt any.

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    1. You’re lucky not to be feeling any pain after your wisdom tooth removal. I had severe pain for a good week and a half after I had the lowers removed. I was prescribed Vicodin for three to five days, and I didn’t take it much because I was afraid of a) vomiting when it was so difficult to open my mouth and b) becoming addicted. At the same time, I couldn’t take Advil because I couldn’t open my mouth well. I was prescribed three ibuprofen as needed when I had my uppers removed, and I very much needed that for a bit, as well — though the pain was far less when the uppers came out than it was with the lowers.

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      1. I think it hurts more to remove them when you are younger. I resisted until the age of 40 to get them out and by that time they were so weakened and non-vigorous, they could be taken out with a pair of tweezers.

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          1. Huh. I never thought of that. My lowers were impacted and growing sideways into my other molars, so they had to do a lot of drilling and take them out in little pieces. I was sixteen. My uppers were too big for my mouth and were messing with the rest of my teeth, but they didn’t come in enough until last year. I guess they just came out with minimal work. It still hurt, though. I suppose if you get them taken out when they’re fully grown it’s more like a regular tooth extraction. Did they give you stitches? Odd that they gave you the hydrocodone after that, especially since it was so recent. In my area in the last couple of years or so there’s been a big informative campaign and new restrictions on opiod and narcotic prescriptions for acute pain. The doctors and nurses here have a pretty rigorous guideline on pain prescriptions.

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            1. No, I needed no stitches and there was barely any bleeding at all. I get more bleeding when I brush my teeth.

              Of course, if you have to take them out in pieces , that’s a whole different level of pain.

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  4. When I had gallbladder surgery they sent me home with a ton of hydrocodone, and no warning about it being an opiate or addictive. I only needed a few, within the first couple days after the surgery. I’m not sure what the rest are supposed to be for.

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  5. After my C-section a year ago, they sent me home with a large bottle of hydrocodone and a large bottle of ibuprofen. The doctor just told me not to drive while on the hydrocodone — nothing more! After much prodding, a nurse told me that I shouldn’t need the hydrocodone after one or two more days under normal circumstances, and that I shouldn’t need the ibuprofen after a week.

    Can you believe it? And they gave me so many pills — just like that!

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  6. I had surgery for a badly broken arm and got morphine, tylox, vicodin and hydrocodone for 30 days. Those were all great drugs, although I didn’t need them after day 2. I cut them in half and stretched them out to watch the sunset with for about 3 months, until I got the last cast off. Then I had a bunch of dental surgery and they gave me hundreds of Lortabs, about 120 to be exact. I didn’t like them and threw them out, so I guess the whole town got them in the water or something. Hm. When I got my wisdom teeth out I had some opiod too, but it was much earlier and they only gave me 2 pills, for 2 days. That was actually the right dose.

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