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Last September Pope Francis visited the United States and he was truly inspirational.
After coming across some notes I took from his speech I thought it might be useful to review and post them. Our world is struggling with many problems, especially terrorism. We need a world leader to inspire and motivate us to take care of one another and our planet.
Here are some of the highlights from his speech:
‘The fragmented world leads to battles to defend our conflicting interests.’
‘Don’t postpone critical global decisions. Especially involving those who are excluded, those who are in need’.
Avoid beauracratic exercises of drawing up ‘plans’ but not acting’.
‘Everyone has a responsibility to the planet’.
‘Examine your conscience.’
‘Pray for those unwilling to govern’.
We need someone to lead the United States and the world on a planet torn by hatred, greed, poverty and pollution.
I am praying that such a leader exists and reveals him/herself.
The concept of sila rests on aspiring to fulfill certain commitments. There are 5 basic precepts of conduct: Refrain from killing or physical violence Refrain from stealing Refrain from sexual misconduct. Refrain from lying, harsh speech, idle speech, gossip, slander Refrain from intoxicants Working on these practices is a daily, moment by moment choice. Making […]
Craftsmanship explores the ethos of craftsmanship in its widest sense. The magazine publishes stories about the most interesting people in the world who work intensely with their hands, from famous masters to new creators.
This is a continuation of an interview with Mary Pat Higley, PharmD.
On a daily basis 44 people in the US die from an overdose of prescription drugs. The figure for street drugs is higher.
One class of drugs, called opiods, is a large part of the problem.
In an interview with Mary Pat Higley, a PharmD with experience in treating chemical dependency and sponsoring addicts we were able to get some insight from her perspectice.
What is fueling this problem? We’ve had Demerol(meperidine), morphine, and Dilaudid (hydromorphone) for decades without this widespread and reportedly epidemic addiction amongst the middle class working families.
Mary Pay Higley says, as a practicing pharmacist for many years in hospitals, clinics, Home Care, Nursing Homes, and Chemical Dependency – Part of the current healthcare crisis is that Western Medicine is a pill taking culture. People go to the doctor with the expectations they will leave with a prescription. Subsequently, people are often given prescriptions they dont really need. The population has not been well educated that some diseases/issues will run their course with your body healing itself, or Over the Counter (OTC) drugs may be sufficient to treat the problem.
When you go to the Dr. most often its expensive, what if you were told to just go home, and hydrate and rest? Would you be ok with that? That would be great. But if we’re expecting a quick fix – its usually thought to be in a prescription form.
Add on top of that the fact that people often don’t take their medications according to the directions. Exceeding the maximum daily amount leads to tolerance and abuse. Abusing some prescription drugs – especially narcotics, sedatives, antianxiety drugs, and stimulants, can lead to a unhealthy dependence on these drugs, both emotionally and physically.
Some of the newer drugs on the market, oxycontin and alprazolam can creat chemical and emotional dependency in a short period of time. Some people are more sensitive than others to these medications. It’s a disease. Do not be ashamed.
Sharing prescription drugs with someone who has not seen a Dr can lead to nonmedical use and abuse and can lead to serious public health concerns. Namely dependence.
Studies on this issue have reported that in 2010, almost 5% of adults and adolescents have turned to prescription medicine for the ‘euphoric or numbing’ effect of the drug,mrather than for the originally intended use, such as short term pain relief.
Reportedly, young adults – those under the age of 25 are the biggest abusers of prescription opiod paid relievers – most commonly Norco, oxycontin, and vicodin. Other drugs of abuse are stimulants used for ADHD and anti-anxiety drigs such as Xanax (alprazolam) and Ativan (lorazepam).
Younger children are shopping in their parents medicine chests for psychoactive drugs, abusing cough medicines available OTC, and smoking a strong version of marijuana that is much different in potency that that used is the 1960’s. It has been reported that 1 in 9 youth aged 12-25 used prescption or OTC medications for recreation use in the past year.
Obviously, combining these medications sometimes creates serious drug interactions, psychotic episodes and sometimes respiratory depression leading to death .
Our homeless youth are especially at risk as they self medicate just to endure their dire living conditions and have no support system to help them recover or learn better coping mechanisms.
Interestingly, according to Dr Higley, despite a steady rate of reporting for pain management, since 1999 the amount of prescriptions prescribed and sold in the United States has increased by 400 %.
Mary Pat Higley says – It’s a viscous cycle – more drug seeking leads to overprescribing and more overdose deaths. Or is it overprescribing that leads to the problem? Which came first?
The world has changed and technology has brought incrased workloads, frustration, and isolation observes Mary Pat Higley, PharmD. Leading to the need to release stress and some of these medications can help – in the short term.
Part of the problem might be that people have not learned to make time for stress reduction activities such as exercise, meditation, massage, accupuncture, yoga, socializing and talking to people. Texting and twitter has taken over as communication. Nothing like having a heart to heart conversation with a trusted friend or family member to resolve problems. lessen the burden of feeling overwhelmed, trapped, and hopeless.
With the economic downturn of 2008 many employers have cut jobs, benefits, pay and have added workload. Gone are the company picnics, social occasions, and workplace comradery that our grandparents knew. My father-in-law worked for a corporation that even sponsored a Glee Club. Pay raises are skimpy if at all. People are stressed and have poor coping mechanisms. They are suffering and turn to self medication to temporarily release the pain.
If you find yourself in a situation whete you are physically and mentally dependant on opiods, heroin or bezodiazepines make an appointment with an medical internist. This is a life threatening disease. Do not be ashamed, be honest and get help. You dont have to suffer alone and you dont hsve to be at risk for overdose or death.