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One-Third of American Adults Prescribed Opioids Each Year, and Opioid Deaths Now Leading Cause of Death for People Under 50

Story at-a-glance -

  • More than one-third of American adults were prescribed an opioid drug in 2015, and opioid overdoses are now the leading cause of death for Americans under the age of 50
  • Back pain, wisdom tooth extraction and pain during pregnancy are common reasons for receiving an opioid prescription. As a result, many young adults and infants are unduly affected by drug addiction
  • Drivers killed in car crashes while under the influence of opioid drugs rose seven-fold between 1995 and 2015

By Dr. Mercola

Opioids kill patients more frequently than any other medication used for nonfatal conditions, yet disturbing statistics reveal more than one-third of American adults were prescribed these dangerous drugs in 2015. Even more shocking, opioid overdoses are now the leading cause of death for Americans under the age of 50.


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