Prescription Drugs Commonly Abused By
Baby Boomers & Elderly

From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:

“State and federal statistics show the number of people in their 50s and early 60s reporting illicit drug use and seeking help with addictions skyrocketed in the past decade. National Institutes of Health surveys show that in 2010, the most current year available, 2.4 million people ages 50-59 said they had abused prescription or illegal drugs within the past month – almost three times as many people as reported that behavior in 2002.”

The Huffington Post lists the 5 most commonly abused drugs by people older than 50:

Stimulants: While stimulants such as Ritalin and Adderall are highly addictive, abuse among older people is not not as widespread as it is with young adults. However, illicit stimulants like cocaine are more common.
Antidepressants: According to a 2010 report from The Drug Abuse Warning Network, antidepressants contributed to 8.6 percent of emergency room visits by adults 50 and older.

Sedatives: Most often used to treat anxiety and insomnia, sedatives like Valium and Xanax may become addictive if take incorrectly, or used too often.

Pain Relievers: Painkillers like Oxycodone, Vicodin and Morphine have a a high potential for abuse.

Medical Marijuana: While many people have medical prescriptions for marijuana use, 3 million adults aged 50 and older have illegally used the drug within the past year, according to a 2011 report from The National Survey on Drug Use and Health.

See the Huffington Post article for more information and statistics regarding drug abuse among baby boomers and the elderly. And if you or someone you know needs help with addiction please call the Pasadena Recovery Center at (866) 663-3030.