U.S. Drug Deaths Outnumber Traffic Fatalities

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Due to the rise in prescription drug abuse, the number of drug-related deaths in the U.S. now outnumbers traffic fatalities, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Although the number of deaths from most preventable causes is declining across the nation, the death toll from drugs is steadily rising.  Every 14 minutes, someone in America dies from drugs.…

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Craigslist Drug Dealers-Where Addiction Meets Online Personals

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Thanks to Craigslist, law enforcement agencies are now battling drug dealers in cyberspace.   Each month, more than 50 million free classified ads are posted on one of the Craigslist websites, which serve 570 cities in 50 countries.  Unlike ads in newspapers and magazines that are reviewed by editors, Craigslist ads are for the most part not checked for content.  This allows drug dealers to post ads for both illicit and prescription drugs.   In cities and towns across the U.S., narcotics investigators are making arrests by responding to ads that are publicly displayed on Craigslist websites.…

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A New Generation of Drug-Addicted Newborns

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The New York Times recently reported on a woman in Maine named Tonya who abused OxyContin and other prescription drugs during her first trimester of pregnancy.  She then attempted to detox on her own, causing her unborn baby to experience seizures.  Next she turned to methadone, which she used daily for the remaining months of her pregnancy.  Shortly after birth, Tonya’s baby began to experience opiate withdrawal.  Doctors had no choice but to begin a course of methadone treatment for the newborn.…

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The Circle of Family Addiction – Genetics, Environment, and Resiliency

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Substance abuse is a complex disorder that has many causes. One of the biggest influences is the family. Scientific research shows that both genetics and the home environment can create a circle of family addiction, with one generation passing on addiction to the next.

The Genetic Factor

By studying the rate of alcoholism among adoptees whose biological parents were alcoholic, researchers have found that the children of alcoholics are 2 to 9 times more likely to become alcoholics. The abuse of cocaine, opiates, stimulants and sedatives follow this same pattern. According to the Genetic Science Center at the University of Utah, there is no single gene that is responsible for addiction. Instead, vulnerability to addiction is caused by many interacting genes.

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