Medicated Society: Are We Too Dependent On Prescription Drugs?

(PCM) It sometimes seems that everywhere we look these days we are being shown some kind of advertising urging us to purchase various products and explaining to us just how these particular products will better our lives. One of the major players in this advertising game is the pharmaceutical industry.

You can not look through a magazine or watch TV without running into at least three or four ads for prescription medications that are said to treat everything from anxiety and depression to arthritis and hair loss. This list is endless. Each ad explains the disorder that we may or may not be suffering from and explains how their pill can make us feel better. But have you ever really paid close attention to these ads? Majority of the time the list of side effects and possible repercussions from taking the medication can be worse then the actual disease or ailment you are suffering from in the first place.

We have become a society that is ready and willing to pop whatever pill is tossed our way to make ourselves feel better as effortlessly as possible. There is big money in pharmaceuticals and these companies are lining their pockets by “keeping” us as sick as possible and making us start to believe that we may need these medications for possibly even the rest of our lives.

That is not to say that many individuals truly are suffering each and every day with many chronic conditions that absolutely do require the use of medications each and every day in order to improve their overall quality of life. We are not arguing that these scenarios exist or there is anything at all wrong with being prescribed necessary medicines, however it is the fact that many of the pharmaceutical advertising can often convince us that we are sick with conditions that we may not have and also doctors are ready and willing to hand out all types of medications, sometimes without doing a complete and proper diagnosis to get to the real root of the patients issue.

According to the National Center for Disease Control, as whopping 48.9% of the population in the United States has taken at least one prescription drug in the last 30 days. What is even more eye-opening is that the CDC states that 11.9% of the U.S. population takes five or more prescription drugs with in the last 30 days. These numbers are astounding.

During routine physician office visits the number of prescription drugs provided and ordered was 2.8 billion and that was back in 2013. We are nearly certain that number has skyrocketed even more in recent years. One of the most frequently prescribed medications is various types of antidepressants, as well as analgesics.

The Eli Lilly & Company first introduced their antidepressant drug Prozak to the market back in 1987 and since that time the use of antidepressants has tripled in the years 1988-1994 and again in 199-2000. In the year of 2016, one in six Americans were taking some kind of psychiatric drug. Pills such as Prozak are only meant to be taken for a short amount of time for example as six month period, however patients report being on them far longer than recommended sometimes for many years on end.

The millions of people who are taking these medications, not only antidepressants often do not realize the risks they are taking, as they are in search of the quickest fix possible for their ailment. Use of certain types of prescription drugs over long periods of time can lead to not only weakened immune systems, but addiction issues as well.

Again, this is not say that every person who takes an antidepressant doesn’t really need one or that other individual suffering from a foot fungus doesn’t need a medication to help clear it up. Also, not everyone that takes prescription drugs will immediately turn into a pill-popping addict. It is just the hope that more people will begin to pay attention to some of the very serious side effect and adverse reactions that can result from long (or short) term use of many of these medications, many of which have not been properly studied and were put out on the market too quickly to meet the public demand and make even more money for big pharmaceutical players.

We all want to live our lives to the fullest and often times we will look at the effects certain disorders have on our bodies and lifestyle, but we do not digger any deeper to discover the root of the problem and it’s underlying cause. Finding that cause can certainly provide more answers and help us figure out the proper way to treat the various conditions we are suffering from which may be with or without the use of prescription drugs.

 

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