Death records confirm a surge in anxiety medication and pain killer abuse along with the associated dependency in Michigan. Experts put forward that the statistics and truth surrounding death records were exclusive to the families coping daily with this prescription drug epidemic. From 1999 death records confirm death from addiction to opioid and prescription drugs has increased five fold. The real life ramifications are also testament to the devastation and fallout that addiction brings affecting adults suffering job loss and unemployment through to school kids. What compounds the issue within every day life is those in charge of vehicles reliant on pain killers.

The abuse of prescription drugs sometimes slips under the radar due to the nature of the drugs being legal. Death records confirm from 2009 through 2013 around 20% of 5,062 deaths in Michigan were as a result of ‘unintentional drug poisoning’. The health department confirms death records confirm death from opioids were now accounting for more deaths than heroine and cocaine. Anxiety medication (benzodiazepines) attributed around 9% of deaths. In 2013 around 1.4billion pills from 20.8 million prescriptions were in the system which equated to 139 pills per resident. Drugs identified in particular are hydrocodone and codeine along with fentanyl.

However the pattern is not restricted to Michigan and is seen as more of a nationwide trend. Between 1999 toi 2010 proportionately death records confirm that opioid deaths doubled from 30% to 60% and accounted for 16,651 fatalities. The Federal Agency confirms opioid analgesic abuse syphons in excess of $72 billion every year in medical costs. These costs are also within the same bracket as chronic and debilitating diseases such as HIV and asthma.

The pain killer Hydrocodone is a composite of Vicodin that being the highest count prescription drug which comprises almost a third of total prescriptions. Over 75% of death from opiates were valid prescriptions and these drugs weren’t mixed with cocaine or heroine as confirmed by a report in 2014 which analyzed prescription and death records.

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