Adam’s story is a very common one. He became addicted to painkillers at age 16. He went to a party where kids were experimenting with alcohol, marijuana, and other drugs. Adam’s friend had taken some painkiller pills called OxyContin from his parents’ medicine cabinet. Adam didn’t know anything about OxyContin, but due to peer pressure, he decided to give it a try. OxyContin is widely prescribed by doctors for severe pain. The father of Adam’s friend was recovering from surgery and had been prescribed this painkiller. He hadn’t taken all of his drugs and had left the prescription bottle in his medicine cabinet. John’s friend wanted to be popular at the party, so he took his father’s medication along with him. OxyContin is highly addictive. In fact, as many as one in four patients can become addicted to it, according to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report. People like Adam and his friend misused OxyContin, which is a time-released drug that works slowly over several hours. However, Adam’s friend crushed the pill, and the boys snorted the medication, feeling the full effect of the drug immediately. Adam became addicted. Oxycontin users quickly build up a drug tolerance, and Adam soon began needing more and more to feel the same euphoria. He began buying the drug on the streets, and he even looked through medicine cabinets of family and friends to steal any leftover medication. Adam’s family and friends intervened, and Adam began a five-year struggle with addiction, a process he described as “hell on Earth.” Adam is now 30 and has been sober for many years. He talks about the toll the drugs took on his body and how physically excruciating it was to go through withdrawal. Adam continues to suffer from health problems, but he is thankful to be alive. His story is very common. Luckily, he survived his ordeal, but many are not as lucky. The same CDC report mentioned earlier shows that 165,000 opioid deaths occurred in the US in a fifteen-year period between 1999 and 2014.


What Is Drug Addiction?

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