Not What The Doctor Ordered


drugs

Four million people in the UK have an addiction to opioids. Only these aren’t the usual class A varieties we maybe familiar with. They are not the drugs whose vice like grip is reported as ruining people’s lives, destroying communities and killing young people; No, these are the lesser know, but socially accepted prescription variety.

The fact is that in the home of the ordinary everyday person a secret resides.

Many people begin taking opioids after injury, operations, for illness and untreatable conditions; but then this normal and everyday action slips suddenly into an addiction.

Why?

What is it about these ‘safe’ prescription medicines that are leading ordinary everyday people into the territory of the shunned drug addicts of the world?

What is it that makes these painkillers so tempting to our brains?

What is it that allows these drugs to grab hold of people to a point that before they realise it, their addiction is entrenched just like any other ‘junkies’? 

Well, opioids, from codeine to diamorphine (which is basically heroin); all act on the central nervous system. They induce a miraculous feeling of well-being; banishing anxiety, inducing a sense of security and easing pain. It is these facts that have made these drugs, these legal class A drugs, popular for many decades.

Just ask the Hollywood film and television industry; they are no strangers to the short lived delights these little pills have to offer.

In fact many of these seemingly innocent painkillers people take everyday are actually so powerful that some of the brands have been affectionately labelled as “hillbilly heroin” (in America).

Yet, the demand for these opioids is still as fresh as the poppy they all originate from.

There has been no slow down on prescriptions; in fact from 1999 to 2008 dispensed opioids have increased from 6.2 million to 14.8 million. Those number equate to a lot of possible future addicts.

Yet, what other options are available for pain relief via the NHS??

Well, not much – either take these drugs or be left with run of the mill Paracetamol, Ibuprofen and Aspirin.

So before we condemn people for taking these heavy duty painkillers think about it; which would you choose if had to,  heroin based pills or excruciating life impairing 24/7 pain??

Not much of an option then.

It is either no pills or take heavy duty painkiller prescriptions and run the risk of becoming a junkie (albeit a self respecting and socially adept junkie).

So is this what the doctor ordered??

Or are the patients to blame for their own addictions by demanding these drugs, when it is made clear often enough they can produce addictive side effects?

What is the solution when this acceptable addiction spirals out of control???

With addiction creating such bad press and negative ideas/stereotypes how does someone exactly admit to the whole world, the world that thinks they are an upstanding and level headed person; that they are in fact addicted to drugs????

What help is out there for these ordinary people hooked on such drugs???

Do they ever receive the help they require or is it merely a case of having to continue to mask their addiction to save face??

What do they do when the pills eventually run out???

OPINIONS PLEASE!!!!!!!

What are your thoughts on prescription medications?? Help or hindrance?

Are these potentially lethal drugs too often dished out like party favours without real pause for thought?

Are patients to blame for demanding the drugs in the first place??

Who is really monitoring the intake of these drugs; GP or patient??

Read Yourself Into Well-Being


According to a study undertaken by the University of Glasgow; 2000 people diagnosed with Depression have made considerable steps towards feeling ‘better’, and have been able to manage their Depression with only the use of self help books.

Yes, the humble SELF HELP BOOK.

However, maybe these books aren’t the miracle they are being deemed to be as half of the studies participants were also receiving Anti-Depressants too.

So, is it possible that a few months with a self help book as your companion, and a a couple of sessions with an adviser (who informs you how to get the most out of this literature), really be the ultimate ‘cure’?

Well, the NHS think so. They seem willing to invest in this treatment, and no wonder as it is claimed this approach could save the NHS £272m and the public sector £700m. A considerable sum of money.

Yet is this just another quick fix being employed to rid the NHS of waiting lists for much needed Psychological treatments?

After all medications are readily prescribed by GPs to those patients waiting, and waiting, and waiting for therapies such as counselling. So perhaps another prescription, albeit in the form of self books wouldn’t be that unusual.

The truth is though that the demand for Psychological treatments is so extreme that the NHS cannot keep up with the referrals being made, and the investment required. Anti-Depressants, or any prescription can be used as a stop gap, a plaster for a deeper wound; therefore removing people from any waiting list which would lead to more money being spent. Yet, wouldn’t the cost be less if the true and deep seated issues were actually being addressed instead of bypassed by drugs and books?

These Anti-Depressant prescriptions actually cost the NHS £16m, but these drugs solve none of the patients real issues; 2 thirds of patients don’t respond to the medication at all. So, why are the NHS willing to waste more money on a dead end, but not a ‘cure’ which Psychological therapies can provide?

How can self help books therefore be contenders, when it has been proven that therapies like CBT are actually what is required?

Is it a case of considering a joined up response? What doesn’t work for one may indeed be beneficial to another? Perhaps; as everyone responds differently to different treatments. Or, maybe it is another save money quick scam.

WHAT DO YOU THINK??? SHARE WITH ME YOUR THOUGHTS ON THIS COMPLEX TOPIC…….

Would you be happy for your GP to prescribe a self help book instead of CBT???

Have self help books worked for you??

Do you think medication alone is the answer??

Is it right that the NHS should cut its funding for Psychological therapies??

HAVE YOUR SAY NOW!

Welcome To No Sleep Anonymous……..


Awake and counting the hours till Dawn……….

Well, I have to say I am physically exhausted and now must be running on adrenalin. I am not sleeping very well at night; in fact I deem 4 hours of uninterrupted sleep as Heavenly bliss!

What the Hell is going on I don’t know, and I don’t like it either.

I can only think it is my brain to blame. I have had this problem off and on throughout my life, and it seems to coincide with having too much going on in my life at one time. I can’t seem to flick the off button on my brain; consequently my mind runs on, and on, and on – all day and all night.

I know it is no good for me, I mean when I was 14 and 15 in school no sleep meant nothing, but now, ummm, its a big difference. I mean it isn’t as though I’m a big ‘mover and shaker’ in the world, but my world, doesn’t matter how small, means too much to me to waste it lying around on the couch and feeling like a zombie.

I envy people who can just switch off and sleep the sleep of the dead. Let me clarify, I don’t mean the actual dead, I mean a heavy sleep where nothing rouses the sleeper or disturbs them. I read how sleep is important to health, and we should all have 6-8 hours a night to maintain our well-being. OK, I get that, but is not as though I am avoiding sleep on purpose, if I could I would sleep, but I can’t!!! My body just won’t submit to sleep, not unless its 100% in the zone, and it never really is (does this make sense). I am like the ‘Princess and the Pea’; any little thing and my brain detects it as an annoyance. I then can’t settle.

I am so desperate to switch off, though I don’t advocate them, I have been day dreaming about sleeping tablets! The relief the thought of having them provides is weirdly comforting. I JUST WANNA SLEEP!!!!!!!!!!

Anyway, none of this is really consequential! It isn’t the end of the world, nobody has died and I am not facing mortal jeopardy. Yet, I think this all clearly explains my erratic mind, twitchy feeling of restlessness, my odd behaviour, apathy and lethargy towards everything, my wandering ideas and over sensitivity, oh and the sprinkling of paranoia.

Please let me sleep tonight, PLEASE!!!!!!!!!

The Declining Health of The NHS


A recent report investigated claims that foreign ‘health tourists’ are able to buy their way onto UK NHS patient lists with GP surgeries.

Apparently these cases of bribery aren’t a one off, but an epidemic. BBC’s Panorama sent undercover reporters to various GP surgeries, where they posed as ‘health tourists’. These reporters subsequently managed to buy their way onto GP lists for substantial amounts of money. They were then referred to hospitals for treatment, even though their complaints were not critical emergencies.

Every health tourist who pays a GP or Health Centre to be registered is handing their money over illegally, and depriving a UK citizen of treatment. The NHS is based on entitlement; as a UK resident you have access to the system, it has nothing to do with how much cash you cough up. This illegal act is heinous enough, but the fact that it then leads to abuse of, an advantage taking of an already under-strain system, is disgusting. People wait long enough for hospital referrals, and to have treatment; even then the service is slow and poor. There is also the post code lottery to contend with; what treatment and medication received depends on where you live in the country! Yet, ‘health tourists’ don’t have this concern, but they are not even UK residents!

People in the UK pay National Insurance to be included in the health system, but they have no privileges. Why then should a health tourist?! This abuse of paying for registration to gain access to the NHS should be dealt with swiftly, before such precious resources are drained dry from the UK residents. Where are the tighter and tougher independent checks, controls and regulations for surgeries to adhere to, to prevent abuses of power? Who is checking on the NHS to make sure money isn’t being wasted and resources aren’t being misused? I mean, it is only a billion pound a year to keep the NHS ticking over, shoddy as it is; but hey that is OK, we have money and resources to waste. The NHS is open to everyone without one question being asked! It seems the NHS believes it has money to burn!

If you are not eligible for free treatment then you should be paying for it, it is that simply surely?! Yet, it is estimated that over the last 3 years health tourism has been allowed to get away with depriving the NHS of over £40 million! It is law that a person has to have been living in the UK for the last year to receive free treatment; although GP surgeries, walk in surgeries and A&E services can overlook this if the case is deemed severe, infectious or life threatening. Hospitals should check a patient’s residential status to ensure they live in the UK, but they don’t; in fact 133 Hospital Trusts didn’t check at all! A mistake, well not one to be forgiven when it has cost the country millions!

People who venture to the UK just to take advantage of what they believe to be another ‘free’ system available for them to abuse should be stopped. It is unfair to expect UK residents to continue paying into a system that is so poorly regulated, and so often abused. Would any other billion pound business be so lax in their regulations and accounts? NO! People in the UK are already paying into the system and hoping they will receive good treatment, but every year the satisfaction with service declines, as money leaks from the NHS. Now one of the reasons for such leakage has been revealed it should be fixed immediately. The NHS’s belt needs tightening, or UK residents will continue to lose out.

The sign says it all!

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© Bex Houghagen and The Savvy Senorita, 2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Bex Houghagen and The Savvy Senorita with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.