Here’s why. Although men are more likely to have issues with prescription drug overdoses, according to the CDC, women are dying from prescription painkiller overdoses at substantially higher rates than ever before. To put it in perspective, since 2007 more women have died from overdoses and abuse of prescription medicines than from motor vehicle crashes.
In fact, between 1999 and 2010 prescription drug overdoses caused 48,000 deaths among women. In 2010 more than 940,000 women were seen in emergency departments for drug misuse or abuse, and over 6,600 women died from an overdose. In that same year there were more than 200,000 emergency department visits for opioid misuse or abuse by women.
Here are some steps you can take to protect against prescription painkiller overdoses:
- Discuss all your medications (including those purchased over-the-counter) with both your doctor and pharmacist.
- Use prescription drugs only as directed by your health care provider.
- Store all medications in a secure place and dispose of them properly, as soon as the course of treatment is done.
- Do not sell, share, or lend prescription drugs.
- Do not borrow prescription drugs or take prescription drugs received from an unreliable source.
- Call Poison Help with any questions or concerns at 1-800-222-1222.
- For more information about prescription drug overdoses, please visit CDC’s Injury Center.
Please note that this post is intended to share information and ideas, as well as to create conversation. Please consult a medical professional before making changes to your lifestyle.