Deaths from prescription painkillers* have reached epidemic levels in the past decade. Many more men than women die of overdoses from prescription painkillers with middle aged adults having the highest rate of overdose.
A big part of the problem is non-medical use of prescription painkillers - using drugs without a prescription, or using drugs just for the "high" they cause.
Preventing Prescription Drug Overdoses
- Don’t ever share medicine with someone else. A medicine is prescribed for you and only you.
- Read the label and follow your doctor’s or pharmacists’ instructions.
- Always lock up your medicine, including painkillers. That way, young children will not get into the medicine and it will be harder for teens or others to take something they should not.
- Keep track of how many pills are in each bottle so you will know if some are missing.
- Discard all unused medicines as soon as you finish taking them. Call your poison center at 1-800-222-1222 about how to dispose of medicine safely.
- Participate in local medication disposal events. It is the safest way to remove prescription drugs from homes and protect the environment at the same time.
For more information, please call the Banner Poison & Drug Information Center directly at (602) 253-3334 or call (800) 222-1222 for your local poison center.
*"Prescription painkillers" refers to opioid or narcotic pain relievers.