The 5th Vital Sign: How Treating Pain Contributed to the Opioid Epidemic

How treating pain contributed to the opioid epidemic

In medicine, there are four key vital signs: temperature, pulse, respiration and blood pressure. However, in many ways, pain is often seen as a phantom fifth vital sign. After all, a doctor’s oath quite literally states “First, do no harm,” and what is more harmful than pain? As such, keeping patients pain-free and comfortable has become a central… Read More

Drug Profile: OxyContin

Oxycontin - Drug Profile - Abuse, Addiction and Treatment

“OxyContin” is a type of painkiller that may be prescribed for the treatment of acute pain as well as some forms of chronic pain. OxyContin is the brand name for the drug “oxycodone hydrochloride.” It’s sometimes referred to as “oxycodone OxyContin” as a result. The drug is an opioid and a narcotic, which means it can be addictive—… Read More

Drug Profile: Hallucinogens

Abuse Addiciton and treatment of Hallucinogen

Hallucinogens are a class of drugs that causes hallucinations due to the presence of psychoactive agents. These drugs are highly addictive and dangerous. One of the most common is LSD, though there are numerous hallucinogenic examples to consider. These drugs have played an active role in today’s culture, allowing people to break away from the stress of life… Read More

Drug Profile: Spice and K2

Treatment for k2/Spice abuse

K2, also known as Spice, is a combination of industrial chemicals that are combined to create a dangerous street drug. It can either be vaporized in liquid form or smoked when added to dried herbs, similar to how marijuana is used. This ‘fake weed’ is usually sold in small packets containing dried, chemical-laced organic materials such as dried… Read More

Hydrocodone: A Drug Profile

Hydrocodone - Abuse, Addiction, and Treatment

Hydrocodone, a type of opioid drug, is the second most frequently seen drug in illegal drug activity, according to the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA). The drug was used by 11.5 million people in the United States over the age of 12 in 2016, most commonly for pain relief. Abuse of hydrocodone occurs when the drug is overused or a significantly higher dose than prescribed… Read More

Benzedrine: Drug Profile

Drug Profile - Benzedrine

Benzedrine is a type of amphetamine that was prescribed as a decongestant as early as 1932.  Often used as an inhalant, Benzedrine works well to clear the nasal passageways. At first, no one recognized the high risk of addiction that came with the use of this drug.  Made popular for many reasons, including famous users such as the writer Jack Kerouac,… Read More

Depressants: A Drug Profile

A Drug Profile - Depressants

Depressants, also called central nervous system depressants, are a type of prescription medication given to those who have anxiety, acute stress reactions or panic. They work to slow down the brain’s activity and include sedatives, hypnotics and tranquilizers. Here’s a closer look at what depressants are and how they work. Depressants have long been a drug of choice… Read More

Ativan: A Drug Profile

Ativan abuse, addiction and treatment - a drug profile

Ativan and other drugs like it can provide enormous relief to people suffering from anxiety and panic disorders. Unfortunately, Ativan also has a darker side, causing it to be part of a dangerous and sometimes even lethal group of substances. Ativan is a brand-name drug containing lorazepam, which is a benzodiazepine prescribed commonly for people experiencing anxiety and less commonly as a way to prevent… Read More

The Straight “Dope” On the Evolution of Drug Slang

Evolution of drug slang - changes

We’ve all heard terms like “dope,” “smack,” “speed” and “nose candy” to describe illegal drugs on television, in the schoolyard and in recovery meetings and addiction treatment programs. Drug dealers and users have used drug slang, also known as drug street names, for decades, and it’s an integral part of the drug culture both in the United States and abroad…. Read More

Caffeine: A Drug Profile

Caffeine - Drug Profile - Abuse Addiction and Treatment

Do you reach for a cup of coffee once a day, or do you drink it all day long? Depending on the type of caffeine you consume and the amount of stimulant in it, you could create negative health effects for yourself if you use it on a long-term basis. In many ways, caffeine is a drug that… Read More