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Prescription Painkiller Crisis: Why Do Americans Consume 80 Percent Of All Prescription Painkillers?


This article made me think of a line from the Rolling Stones:

“And though she’s not really ill, there’s a little yellow pill”

Americans are a drug addicted culture. We have swallowed the indoctrination that mainstream medicine can  cure any ill, be it physical or psychological. Watch the TV. What do you see? Commercials for drugs to cure heartburn, to put you to sleep, for indigestion, arthritis, constipation, occasional irregularity, erectile dysfunction, and a myriad of other problems curable, without addiction, by herbal remedies.  Never mind that the American public swallows the crap the medical establishment dishes up about chemotherapy and radiation. Did you know you have a higher chance of surviving cancer by doing nothing, than being radiated and chemicaled? Look it up. Of course very effective cures for cancer are banned in the US. Only pharmaceutical industry/ AMA treatments allowed. Meanwhile hundreds of thousands die needlessly each year, so big Pharma and Big Medicine can make their big money. It is pathetic really, that the American people are so brainwashed into ‘trusting’ their doctors, that they will ignore other, more effective, remedies, and pay their way into debt to keep taking medications that manage diseases and conditions, rather than curing them. – Shorty Dawkins, Associate Editor

This article comes from

by Michael Snyder

If Americans are so happy, then why do we consume 80 percent of the entire global supply of prescription painkillers?  Less than 5 percent of the world’s population lives in this country, and yet we buy four-fifths of these highly addictive drugs.  In the United States today, approximately 4.7 million Americans are addicted to prescription pain relievers, and that represents about a 300 percent increase since 1999.  If you personally know someone that is suffering from this addiction, then you probably already know how immensely destructive these drugs can be.  Someone that was formally living a very healthy and normal life can be reduced to a total basket case within a matter of weeks.

And of course many don’t make it back at all.  According to the CDC, more than 28,000 Americans died from opioid overdoses in 2014.  Incredibly, those deaths represented 60 percent of all drug overdose deaths in the United States for that year

A report released by the US Centers for Disesase Control and Prevention (CDC) in January revealed that drug-overdose deaths reached a new high in 2014, totaling 47,055 people. Opioids, a type of powerful painkiller that requires a prescription, were involved in 60% of those deaths.

Many Americans that start out on legal opioids quickly find themselves moving over to heroin because it is often cheaper and easier to obtain, and the U.S. is now facing a tremendous epidemic of heroin abuse as well.  In fact, the number of Americans that die of a heroin overdose nearly quadrupled between 2000 to 2013.

Finally, the federal government has started to take notice of this crisis.  A bill was recently passed to spend more than a billion dollars over the next two year fighting this problem.

But as long as doctors are writing thousands upon thousands of new prescriptions for these painkillers each year, this crisis is not going to go away any time soon.

In the Appalachians, these prescription painkillers are commonly known as “hillbilly heroin“, and all of the attention that the New Hampshire primaries received focused a lot of attention on how this crisis is destroying countless numbers of lives up in the Northeast.  But one survey found that the states with the biggest problems with painkiller addiction are actually in the West

The National Survey on Drug Use and Health, a survey of approximately 67,500 people across the United States, found that the states with the highest rates of narcotic painkiller abuse were in the West – Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon and Washington.

Read more here.


Shorty Dawkins



  1. I was seriously hooked on Hydrocodone for about 13 years after failed back surgery of which THEY carelessly stripped 7 inches of motor nerve, disabling my left foot.

    I was always going through withdrawal symptoms because of VA pharmacy screw-ups with delayed or no delivery of meds. I had had enough and had to do something radical.

    Two years ago, I qualified for Medical Marijuana and went from stopping pain meds cold to smoking pot all day for a week and had no desire for opiates anymore. I went from smoking everyday to maybe a joint about once a day to once a week to now…nothing.

    Today I am drug free, happy and taking Systemic Enzymes…and about pain free.

    1. So it doesn’t sound like you were hooked…it sounds like you had a legitimate problem and that was the solution at the time. Don’t bend your own story to meet this horseshit. There is a difference between addiction and dependency , a dependency is part of ANY drug that is TRULY needed.

  2. And you are forced to have insurance and use the flawed fear based health care system called Obamacare. I’m one of the lucky few that is retired and am still on no meds. Healthy food, exercise and a belief that our Lord will keep me well or take me home still work wonders.

  3. If Americans (I suppose you mean USA citizens) are so happy.

    I have trouble with that.

    How can 100 million unemployed people be happy?

    Or the 45 million on food stamps?

    I think they are very unhappy and the circumstances they live in would account for taking drugs that lessen the mental pain.

    How many drugs are prescribed for people in nursing homes or for prisoners to keep them in a mental fog to keep them quiet.

    Never trust the pharmaceutical industry.

    I am 81 years of age and am convinced that there are parts of drugs that MAKE you dependent on them e.g I am on 2 prescription drugs which I don’t want or need but if I do not take them I lie awake for hours; this is not healthy as it is easy to think about things which are better left alone. Deal with problems but do not dwell on them.


    The opium poppy is the king of painkillers even when synthesized.

    Because of chronic pain I was on opoids from 1991 till last year.

    I was on codeine and progressed to methadone (no, I was never a junkie, this was for pain) and suboxone.

    The latter is so restricted that the head of the alcohol and drug administration in the entire shire (county) treated me personally.

    I received 7 pills per week, pick up on Sunday but do not bother to come on Saturday because you are not due yet.

    I do not know if suboxone was responsible for what happened but a year ago I did a cold turkey on all painkillers and do not miss them, even when I suffer I can look at them and the memories of chronic constipation come back as horror stories and indignities. I am looking at them now.

    I should say that I have a history of doing cold turkeys with alcohol and smoking.

    It is important to understand that you cannot give those things up to please other people, you should only do it because YOU want to.

    In my case my first grandchild was due and I promised myself that no grandchild would ever see me drunk. This was in 1980. And none have.

    Many people have heard the expression: to hit rock bottom. But it is rarely defined.

    In my case it means: I have reached the point beyond which I do not want to go.

    I hope I have been of some help and wish everybody all the best; not willpower because that is soluble in alcohol.

  4. For those who have not lived abroad the key to the study is prescription drugs. Most pain killers worldwide are over the counter and a prescription is not required. I have seen many people become addicted while working internationally. In other words this is a false study as usual.

    True pain management requires some form of relief. If the political class decide to allow our elderly brothers and sisters to suffer there will be an explosion of suicides in our elderly population. Maybe that is their goal.

  5. Opioid deaths is a side effect of the failed war on drugs, particularly marijuana. A recent article that appeared in the Journal of the American Medical Association Internal Medicine estimated that among the states that had legalized medical marijuana, deaths from opioid overdose were 24.8% lower than in states that banned marijuana. The reason is simple — marijuana opts out of the prescription mill medical community and provides an alternative to addictive opioids for treating chronic pain. I watched my Korean War veteran dad die from prescription opioids and their side effects, so when my mom developed chronic pain health issues (spine compression fracture), we opted for medical marijuana. Works great..

    1. Mark,

      Good news concerning your mother. Sad your Father suffered. That is a natural alternative for just about everything, but Bog Pharma and the AMA try desperately to block us from using them.

      Shorty Dawkins

  6. Sorry Shorty if I burst your bubble, but if I did not take my legal fix each day I would not be able to get out of bed. No kidding it is that bad and hooch does nothing but makes be unable to function. As in Duh!!! The way I feel about it, is I would rather live one year and be able to move than lie in my bed unable to move.

    1. Charlie Brown,

      You haven’t burst my bubble at all. You have reinforced what I said. You tried one possible alternative and didn’t like the side effects. After 25 years of being a carpenter, and wearing a tool belt every day, I had back lower pains, such that I couldn’t sit up in bed in the morning. I had to roll out of bed. After a half hour of pain, through movement, the pains would subside. When I paused for lunch, the pains would return and it would take me a half hour to loosen up again. I realized that it was the tool belt, and the lifting and bending from carpentry that was causing my back pain. I didn’t start taking pain pills. Instead, I changed my occupation. I’ll get a day or two a month of some back pain, but nothing anywhere near as bad as it was. I looked for the cause of the ache, not at the symptoms.
      You might say, “Well, that was easy for you, but…..” Here is a second example:
      A friend of mine’s wife, “Jane”, had done triathlons for many years. She was in tiptop shape. After having a cold, or flu, and being in bed for several days, she woke up one day to find she couldn’t move without great pain. The doctors told her she had an advanced case of rheumatoid arthritis, and would be in a wheelchair for the rest of her life. “Jane” wasn’t about to be in a wheelchair, so she began researching what she could do on the internet. To make a long story short, she cured herself, with alternative medicines and changes to her diet, and within 6 months she was playing tennis. She was 52 at the time. She gave up triathlons, as she found them to be the cause of her problem.

      A third example:
      Type 1 Diabetes is incurable, right? Everyone knows that is true, yet, I know of a man who was in his fifties, having taken insulin for his whole life. Today he is off insulin entirely, and has been for 15 months, and is healthier than he has been in years. He decided to act on his own when the doctors told him he had three years, outside, to live. His diet is drastically different, but he can eat all he wants, within the dietary guidelines. He learned the real cause of diabetes.

      A fourth example:
      A carpenter friend of mine had severe back pains that would keep him bedridden for days at a time. Regular doctors weren’t helping. He consulted a chiropractor, who told him to do situps every day, to strengthen his stomach muscles. That cured his pain. His big gut and weak stomach muscles were putting added strain on his back. The chiropractor found the cause of the pain.

      Modern medicine is no better, and possibly far worse, than folk remedies. Herbal medicine, and the ability to cure the disease/condition by finding the cause, rather than treating the symptoms is the answer.

      Shorty Dawkins

      1. The natural alternative to opioids are opiates… there IS no alternative that offers the relief that opioids do along with the versatility. The biggest problem here is folks who turn this into a moral dilemma…as if you are proving something by not utilizing tools at your disposal. Just how the problems of addiction became ours aswell, instead of people exercising simple dicipline, the chronic pain community now must listen to people like you rehash this garbage over and over and over. You are beating a dead horse. There are plenty of people who could do without their opioids …but very many more whos lives would not be worth living.

  7. Hi Shorty, thanks for the upbeat talk. Maybe after I get the surgery done on my neck, shoulder and hand, I will give those a try.I could sure stand to lose a few pounds. I have tried several Chiropractors and physical therapists, but it didn’t help. I hate going the surgery route, I have put it off for a year, but I gotta try something. As I am sure you know severe pain makes you kind of desperate.

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