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Effects Social Media And Big Pharmaceutical Companies Have

by Landmark Recovery

December 12, 2017
Social media applications on an iphone

Are you wondering how big pharmaceutical companies and social media can influence drug and alcohol abuse? Well, if you have teenage kids, you need to take time and think about it. You need to find answers as well. Your discovery will be useful in protecting your loved one from addiction.

A survey as part of Internet & American Life Project of Pew Research Center discovered that 95 percent of teenagers aged 12 to 17 use the web. The percentage of those in the same group who use social media is at 81 percent. According to a Columbia University National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse report, teens on social media are more likely to smoke, take alcohol and drugs.


Drug addiction and social media

Social media applications on an iphone

The same report says 90 percent of teenagers had shared images of peers drinking, using drugs or passing out on social sites by the time they made 15 years. Teens who see such images are twice more likely to consume alcohol and four times likely to use marijuana. These same teens can easily access mind-altering substances including prescription drugs. They are more likely to have friends abusing prescription drugs and alcohol.

Many American addicts begin smoking, drinking and using drugs before they turn 18 years. The earlier one begins using addictive substances, the more likelihood of becoming addicted. About 25 percent of people who start to use addictive substances before they turn 18 years become addicts. However, only about one of every 25 Americans who use addictive substances before turning 21 becomes addicts.


Does social media cause drug addiction?

Most people never realize that social media can influence whether a person can decide to use drugs. It explains the ultimate addictions which follow afterward. Currently, almost everyone in the U.S is hooked up to at least one social media site.

Some spend a few minutes a week though there are some who spend hours daily. Everyone can get addicted regardless of how much time you spend on social media. There are various reasons which show a direct link between social media and addiction.


Social media exposure leads to acceptance

Many people are on social sites like Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and MySpace where they regularly get exposed to images and videos of people abusing drugs and drinking. In most cases, this content shows people who passed out from drinking too much or engaging in irresponsible activities as a result of alcohol or drug abuse.

Some of the people in the images and videos might be those known to you. It might be your family member or friend. They might also be celebrities in the public eye. It will have detrimental effects on those who get to see this content. Regular viewing of such images and videos might make one believe it’s acceptable to over drink and abuse drugs.


Cyber bulling through social media

Another reason why social media ends up promoting drug addiction is through cyber-bullying. It usually happens to people with depression or anxiety. These people are more susceptible to being bullied online. Harassment of this kind is so easy since there’s no face-to-face interaction. It usually involves body shaming, use of hateful words and teasing.

Most victims end up turning to drug use when overwhelmed by anxiety and depression. It’s mostly teenagers who are hit hard by cyberbullying on social media.


Can pharmaceutical companies be blamed for prescription drug addictions?

Addictions to painkillers are racking up immense consequences in the US, and it’s now a big problem. The National Institute on Drug Abuse says about 52 million Americans above age 12 have used prescription drugs for non-medical reasons. With such a significant number, there’s need to ponder whether or not pharma companies take the blame for the increase in prescription drug addiction.


How to explain for this

Prescription drug Addictions have increased in the last decades for various reasons. One way to clarify for this might be the increase in availability of these medications. People believe any drug prescribed by a physician cannot cause addiction. It has made many Americans get hooked on prescription medications such as stimulants, sedatives plus painkillers.

Most times it only takes a few weeks of taking the medication and then getting off to discover that you might need rehab. Though prescription drugs are safe when taken in right doses and monitored by a physician, taking them might become a habit. They might cause a high level of tolerance and make you heavily dependent on them.

It’s advisable to check into a rehab if you find yourself in such a situation. Here, you will have a treatment program designed to suit your needs. By the time you get done with rehab, you will be your true self again. At the treatment center, you will meet regularly with trained medical personnel to help you get off prescription medications.


Why people use prescription drugs?

People use prescription drugs for a variety of reasons. The most notable ones include the following:

  • Ease of access
  • Readily available everywhere
  • Legal drugs
  • Cheap to buy
  • Safe to use instead of illegal drugs

Many people turn to prescription drugs thinking they are safer. They do this in disregard of the fact that the number of people dying from prescription drug overdose has drastically skyrocketed. A STAT forecast estimates that drugs could kill about 500,000 Americans in the next decade. With the increase in prescriptions written for painkillers, the problem is likely to get worse. Coupled with increased distribution, deaths are simultaneous to increase if stringent measures are not put in place.


Who takes the blame?

It’s evident that big pharmaceuticals are to blame for the increased drug addiction and deaths. They are reeking in highly from the current opiates crisis. However, there are other players as well. These include:

  • Doctors who make prescriptions to make money
  • Parents who recklessly leave their drugs lying about
  • People who illegally offer medications to others
  • Parents who don’t teach their kids the dangers of using prescription drugs


Get professional assistance

For anyone currently facing drug or addiction or has a relative with the same problem, inpatient rehab treatment will offer long-term recovery. There are lots of benefits including detox, exercise, counseling, aftercare, and staying in a substance-free environment. Call 502 309 2675 to get immediate assistance and reclaim your life.

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About the Author

Landmark Recovery

Landmark Recovery

Landmark Recovery was founded with a determination to make addiction treatment accessible for all. Through our integrated treatment programs, we've helped thousands of people choose recovery over addiction and get back to life on their own terms. We're on a mission to save one million lives over the next century. We encourage all those struggling with substance use to seek professional help.