"As a parent, I was very surprised at the information that we got," said Councilwoman Marie Waldron at the Escondido City Council meeting of December 16. She was referring to what she'd gathered at the recent Legislative Policy Summit of The Oxy Task Force of San Diego, a collaberative group spear-headed by County Supervisor Pam Slater-Price.

Waldron referred to Oxycodone as the main ingredient in Oxycontin, a synthetic opiate that gives a heroin-like high. "Most people grow up with the idea that prescription drugs are safe," she said. "They'll see their parents pop a pill for a headache; or give them Tylenol when kids are sick, but prescription drug abuse is one of the biggest and growing problems we have in this country.

"Most bathroom medicine cabinets contain long-forgotten prescription drugs. Kids know the drugs are there and they're using them."

Young people between the ages of 17 and 25 (some as young as 12) are buying Oxycontin wherever they can get it and are paying $50 to $80 per pill. It is highly addictive and often leads to the use of heroin, a much cheaper alternative at $50 per gram. It is more lethal than Vicoden and is becoming increasingly common at parties, particularly in affluent areas of San Diego. This year, there have been 51 prescription drug-related deaths and Alvarado Parkway Institute has reported a tripling of weekly Oxycontin-related treatment caseloads in the past year.

Kids get drugs over the Internet, by theft, using fradulent prescription pads and dirty doctors; or, from foreign countries. Users may start with a quarter of a pill and can go up to 8 pills a day. Heavy users spend upwards of $640 per day. In its continuous-release form, Oxycodone is known as Oxycontin. "A user will typically rub off the time-release coating of the pill and then smoke it, crush it, snort it, or inject it," Waldron said. "The full effect is then immediate so that it is a full-on attack."

She also mentioned that the early warnings signs are important because parents are the first line of defense in fighting the problem.

The signs are as follows:

  1. Loss of interest in things that were once important to the kids

  2. Withdrawl from the family

  3. A drop in academic performance

  4. Loss of motivation

  5. Is always tired

  6. Is constantly asking for money with nothing to show for it

  7. Items are missing from the home

Waldron emphasized the importance of searching for paraphernalia. "If you see aluminum foil in kids' rooms," she said. "they use that in hollowed-out pens and straws, lighters, especially aluminum foil with black streaks on it in their rooms. ...they take the pill and put it on the foil and heat it up; and, as the pill melts a little bit, it smokes, and it moves down the foil and creates a black streak and they inhale that smoke and they get an instant high from that."

Comments

Detoxer Dec. 18, 2009 @ 8:15 p.m.

This is a very good post. OxyContin is creating an epidemic across the country. We have to find a way to stop the easy access to these deadly drugs--legal heroin.

Steve http://novusdetox.com

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PistolPete Dec. 18, 2009 @ 11:01 p.m.

LMAO@ detoxer. When, oh when, will people like you fully understand the reality that drugs are NEVER going to go away? When? Man has been finding a way to get high and forget about his problems since the beginning of time. NOBODY...I repeat NOBODY, will EVER stop man from getting high. Nobody. Ban Oxycontin and once again, the legitimate users that really need it will once again lose and have to suffer just because you've taken up a lost cause. Nice.

Here's a thought detoxer, why don't you get so high that you never come back to bother the human race again? You can also take your worthless link and stick it up your ass.

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David Dodd Dec. 18, 2009 @ 11:42 p.m.

Pete, dude - harsh, much? It's just his or her opinion. I mean, I don't really agree with it either, I mean, I think all drugs should be legal for adults, but take it easy!

And Mindy, a couple of things about this article - heroine is an opiate, and opiates don't normally give off a rush. I wasn't familiar with Oxycondone, so I just looked it up, and apparently it's also opiate-based, but apparently synthesized. At any rate, most accounts of opiates (opium, heroin, et. al.) don't mention a rush within the drugs effects. Euphoria, perhaps?

The other term that baffled me was the use of the word lethal, in the sentence, "It is more lethal than Vicoden...". Do you mean more "potent", or are you inferring that people are fatally overdosing on Vicodin and even more are fatally overdosing on Oxycondone? I haven't read about fatal overdoses of either, actually. Just curious.

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Russ Lewis Dec. 18, 2009 @ 11:57 p.m.

(#3) "Heroine is an opiate." You mean "heroin," of course. Proof again that the spell checker is only as good as the idiot using it. Remember Roky Erickson's words, Gringo: "I'm Her Hero, She's My Heroine."

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thestoryteller Dec. 19, 2009 @ midnight

Thanks, Steve.

Refried: "Rush" is a word quoted from Councilwoman Waldron. She is a member of the Task Force so I didn't doubt it. As far The term usually used is "a heroin-like high."

The exact quote from the Task Force Facebook page is, "Oxycontin is a more urgent concern than other more widely abused painkillers, because it is highly addictive, more lethal than weaker abused drugs such as Vicoden and increasingly common-place at parties.

Waldron isn't an expert on the subject, just a concerned parent and a responsible Councilwoman. Awareness is key.

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David Dodd Dec. 19, 2009 @ 12:25 a.m.

russ, forgive me, I browse literary crap all day. And I don't spell-check my blog comments anyway, it was simply an issue of typing literary terms for ten hours, and screwing it up absent mindedly here. Although I did read a funny story last week from a literary agent who was laughing about a prospective author describing his protagonist as the heroin of his novel. Which, you know, could be a good thing?

Mindy, cool on the first point, it was her words so no issue there. But lethal, by definition, implies death. For example, a lethal weapon, or a lethal injection. I reckon that the Task Force is "dying" to get their point across. Like I said, I was just curious, it didn't make sense.

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rickeysays Dec. 19, 2009 @ 2:20 a.m.

Heroine can be an opiate if the castings right-say Halle Berry.

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PistolPete Dec. 19, 2009 @ 9:29 a.m.

Sorry refried. Spammers like this Steve douchebag piss me off. I don't use drugs anymore but when I did, they were fun. I won't lie and say I didn't abuse them. I did. Abusing them was the only thing fun about them. This is different though. This Steve douchebag wants to try and ban OXY because a few people have abused it. Is the guy insane? That's like trying to ban cars because some people drink and drive. I'm tired of self-righteous pricks like this one.

Steve? You don't like OXY? FINE!!!!!!! Don't f***in' use it! Some people need it.

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thestoryteller Dec. 19, 2009 @ 3:07 p.m.

I think people should be able to get it if they need it for pain. People abuse drugs despite what's legal, illegal, or anything in between. People huff spray paint! Did you see the guy on T.V. who wants a share of the market for T'shirts and mugs with his mug shot with a spray-painted mouth?

As "Big Kahuna" said regarding marijuana, "Use it, don't abuse it!

Refried: In your honor, I'm changing "heroin-like rush" to "heroin-like high".

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Robert Hagen Dec. 19, 2009 @ 3:28 p.m.

Oxycontin is synthetic morphine.

In my opinion, it would be much better to take the stuff thats grown in Afghanistan, opium poppies, which also make heroin, and use that. Organic is always better than synthetic.

Tweaking on crystal meth cost me at least a decade of my life. I wish I had stuck with beer and pot- they're natural.

These synthetics will put you in a bad place.

But I feel that that recovery is in progress for me, but it won't happen overnight. It takes time.

For example, when I used to tweak, I would get so sexually charged up, any young chick was a target for my fantasies. Recently, I was working with a totally beautiful, young seventeen year old. Because I don't tweak now, the more I interacted with her, the more I would act more fatherly. I realized that sex with her would be a flashback to my drug days, and not something I would want to pursue. Organically, I saw her as a young person in need of guidance and direction, and support. And she did too.

Going organic, and cutting the BS from your life pays big dividends.

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antigeekess Dec. 19, 2009 @ 6 p.m.

I always thought THIS song was titled Hero/Heroin (sans "e.") I think it makes a lot more sense that way.

Whether someone's your hero or your heroine, they can be your heroin.

Same thing, really. :)

As for drugs, does anyone know the straight stats regarding legality and usage of various drugs in Europe? My guess would be that most are legal, and that Europeans are overall none the worse for it.

I could be wrong, and I'm too lazy/tired to research it.

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rickeysays Dec. 19, 2009 @ 11:57 p.m.

Diego, my advice to you is don't trust your own judgement. This statement "Organic is always better than synthetic" brands you an idiot. Your brain doesn't work well. Maybe you damaged it with the meth. Maybe it never worked well. But don't trust it.

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skennerl Dec. 29, 2009 @ 5:51 a.m.

Disagree with you rickeysays - I think Diego makes a good point and your little poke at his brain capacity due to taking some stuff was bitchy and downright nasty.

The only way to overcome the drug problems in society is to legalise use. Legalise, control distribution and discourage. You would empty the jails. You would disempower the drug lords. You would make every person who wanted a high safe from overdose.

Won't happen of course - too many powerful people make a lot of money from the illegal drug trade.

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