According to a study conducted by Maria A. Parker, a doctoral student at Michigan State University’s Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, 14 and 15 year olds are at a high risk of painkiller addiction. The study shows that when these teens use the prescription painkiller within a 12-month period beyond the prescribed duration, they are more likely than other young individuals to become dependent on the opioids.
The study was conducted based on research from 2002 to 2013 that focused on individuals ages 12 to 20. Based on the 42,000 respondents, 14 and 15 year olds were two to three times more likely to develop an addiction to painkillers within one year than individuals who is 20 or 21 years old.
Maria Parker made the following statement regarding the study and its results:
“Many kids start using these drugs other than what’s prescribed because they’re curious to see what it feels like. The point of our study was to estimate the risk of dependency after someone in this age group starts using them beyond the boundaries of a doctor’s orders. It’s important to identify when young people are starting to use these drugs because it allows us to provide prevention or intervention outreach strategies around these ages and much earlier on so things don’t escalate into something worse. No age group is free from risk though.”
Statistics in Michigan revealed that painkiller use, including drugs such as Vicodin, has quadrupled over the last eight years. Many states are beginning efforts to crack down on prescription drug issues and it begins with knowing and understanding the drugs and possible addiction risks. Parents should know the appropriate dosage amounts prescribed to their children and storing these prescription drugs in a proper location.
There are certain criminal offenses that involve prescription painkillers. Certain tasks forces have been assembled in order to combat the growing issues with prescription drugs and offer various recommendations to help with abuse.
If you or someone you love has been arrested on charges involving prescription drugs, contact our team at The Koffel Law Firm. We are ready to help you move forward in a more positive, effective manner.