Pain Reliever Abuse– More Than Fourfold Percentage Increase of U.S. Treatment Admissions
The percentage of admissions to state-funded substance abuse treatment programs involving pain reliever abuse increased from 2.2% in 1998 to 9.8% in 2008, according to recently released data from the Treatment Episode Data Set (TEDS).
While increases were seen across all age groups, some of the largest increases occurred among adults 18 to 24 years old and 25 to 34 years old, resulting in treatment admissions for these age groups becoming the most likely to involve pain reliever abuse.
According to the authors, “early identification of pain reliever abuse, outreach to abusers, and provision of appropriate and effective treatment services, including relapse prevention, will be important for helping abusers of prescription pain relievers—and especially those in younger age groups—make long-term productive contributions to society”
Similar increases have been seen among emergency department visits involving pain relievers.