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Effects and Abuse of Prescription Drugs in the United States of America - Essay Example

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Effects and Abuse of Prescription Drugs in the United States of America

This is because the prescribed drug abuse has not just become a health serious concern, but also a social one due to increasing deaths and suicides arising from their misuse, and the increasingly negative impacts such individuals pose to their families, relationships and the wider community around them. Of concern is the national level statistics on prescribed drugs abuse, revealing that such induced deaths have for the first time outstripped deaths arising from other street drugs and traffic accidents, after quadrupling since the start of 2000 (National Surveys on Drug Use and Health, 2012). Hence, the aim of this paper is to evaluate the effect of and abuse of prescription drugs in US from a sociological perspective. Discussion Statistics derived by National Survey on Drug Use and Health, indicates that over 1.7 million Americans between the ages of 12 and 25 years misuse any accessible prescribed medication drug (2012). The report also notes that a total of 2.2 million Americans kick off non-medical utilization of prescribed drugs annually, and this is more than those initiated to other street drugs, like marijuana whose figures are estimated at 2.1 million, while number of people using cocaine standing at 872,000. The prescription drugs are medications assigned to sick persons by health professional in order to relieve the person of any symptoms. The drugs are supposed to be used under a set of rules which are meant to direct the patient when using the medication and only for a certain period. For that reason, abuse of prescribed medication is a deviant behavior which takes place when there is a collapse of control, in terms of personal behavior and the in-general social order. Most of these drugs are used by individuals for outrageously different reasons, such as helping them to sleep, while some misuse them to relieve their mental distresses, and others misuse them as performance enhancers especially college students. Notably, more and more Americans are now using prescribed drugs, especially painkillers wrongfully, and this has resulted in the number of deaths reported from their abuses, surpassing the number of lives other narcotics drugs such as heroin or cocaine take annually when combined. In particular, young Americans aged between 12-17 years are the most probable to begin non-medical utilization and abuse of prescribed psychotherapeutic medications (National Surveys on Drug Use and Health, 2012). Such trends can be explained by social ecological premise, which assesses societal problem in not just a contextual manner, but also through an environmental angle (Jones, Bradbury, & LeBoutillier, 2011). Given that the young people tend to develop within dissimilar but interrelated environments that are either proximal or distant, they tend to ride along the multiple levels of influence arising from diverse environment effects. Hence, abuse of prescribed medications is widespread in young individuals, since they tend to follow any desired outcome that ignites their emotions and interest. Lauer & Lauer (2011) observes that norms, mind-set and values determine an individual behavior in the society, and as such, deviance and the resultant social problems are as typical as the standards themselves. On the other hand, functionalist point of view asserts that medication ...Show more
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Before dealing with any social problems, there should be an understanding of what results in such problems, what makes such problems to persist, and how such problems affects individuals’ quality of life…
Effects and Abuse of Prescription Drugs in the United States of America
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