Since the turn of the century, the number of Americans that have been prescribed painkillers have quadrupled despite the fact that there has been no reported increase in pain. This statistic correlates with an increased number of people overdosing from these same medications, also four times higher. In 2013, 16,000 people in America died from prescription painkiller overdoses while another two million (ages 12 and older) admitted to painkiller dependency or abuse.
The increase in prescription painkiller use can likely be credited to a few things: doctors who overprescribe medication, patients who have not properly weaned themselves off of medication, and a recreational population who either purchases or sells prescription narcotics on the black market.
According to a recent study in Drug and Alcohol Review, marijuana is a viable option for drug and alcohol treatment. In a survey of 473 medical marijuana patients, researchers found that 80.3% use marijuana to replace prescription drugs despite its increased cost. Marijuana was also a common replacement for alcohol and other illicit substances, especially among patients under 40 years old.
Here is a list of 5 prescription drugs that could be replaced by marijuana.
Prescription painkillers like Hydrocodone, Tramadol and Oxycodone are among the most popular – and most widely abused – pain medications in America. Accounting for 44 deaths per day in the U.S., prescription painkillers are both easy to acquire and hard to let go.
Studies show that marijuana can can be used effectively to treat pain without the risk of serious side effects. Some of the best strains to choose for pain management include Indica-dominant strains like Afghan Kush, Blue Widow or Dynamite.