Oxycodone Drug Abuse on College Campus
Oxycodone is an opioid prescription pain medication. An opioid in some instances is called a narcotic. Oxycodone is used to treat moderate to severe pain. The extended-release form of oxycodone is for long-term treatment of chronic pain. Oxycodone is most commonly prescribed to patients to manage pain after a big medical procedure or surgery.
The illicit use of prescription painkillers such as Oxycodone is now the number one reason for drug overdose related deaths in the United States. Oxycodone drug abuse is nationwide because of its known euphoric effects, its ability to lessen anxiety, and to give the user an overall pleasant experience. Oxycodone is also extremely addictive so this goes hand in hand with the why it is one of the most commonly abused drugs in the United States. People who abuse Oxycodone usually chew or crush the pills to snort or intravenously inject directly into their blood stream.
Here are some general Oxycodone Drug abuse facts:
- Oxycodone has more first time abusers than marijuana or cocaine…
- There is oxycodone use in all 3,140 counties in the United States…
- Oxycodone has been illicitly abused for the past 20-30 years and is now currently on the rise…
- The Drug Abuse Warning Network said that, “Oxycodone-related hospital visits increased from 5,211 visits per year in 1998 to over 10,000 visits per year in 2000.” This continues to grow.
So, has oxycodone drug abuse made its way to college kids?
Unfortunately, Oxycodone drug abuse on college campuses nationwide is beginning to rise just like the use of Oxycodone in general. Oxycodone drug abuse has increased dramatically on college and university campuses since the mid 1990’s. According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, in 2002 approximately 1.9 million people aged 12 or older had used Oxycodone non-medically at least once in their life time. The Drug Abuse Warning Network’s Report on Narcotic Analgesics shows that ER visits related to abuse of Oxycodone made up 70 percent of the visits from 2000-2001 and the rates were the highest for the college-age group of people between 18-25 years old.
- Although most college students use prescription drugs properly, about one in four people aged 18 to 20 report using these medications non-medically at least once in their lives (NSDUH, 2008).
- Non-medical use of pain relievers is on the rise among college-age youth (SAMHSA, 2009a). This age group also has the highest prevalence rate of non-medical use of prescription opioids in the US (McCabe et al, 2007).
- College students misuse prescription stimulants to ―get in the zone or pull all night study sessions—a habit that is most likely to begin in college (Teter et al, 2006).
- Among people 18 to 22 years of age, full-time college students are twice as likely to use a stimulant for nonmedical reasons in the past year compared to those who aren’t in college or are only part-time students (SAMHSA, 2009).
- By students’ sophomore year in college, about half of their classmates will have been offered the opportunity to abuse a prescription drug (Arria, 2008).
Oxycodone Drug Abuse is usually a substitute for heroin drug abuse on college campuses. Because Oxycodone isn’t necessarily a street drug and because Oxycodone is also easily found at college kids’ parent’s houses it makes it more rampant of a drug among young people.