|Series||Elder drug misuse brochure|
|The Physical Object|
|Pagination||1 folded sheet (8 p.) : ill. ;|
Researchers are only beginning to realize the pervasiveness of substance abuse, such as alcohol and prescription drug misuse, among older people, thousands of whom need treatment but do not receive it. This Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) recommends best practices for identifying, screening, assessing, and treating alcohol and prescription drug abuse among people age 60 and older. Substance abuse, particularly of alcohol and prescription drugs, often goes undetected among adults over 60 in part due to societal reasons - older adults tend to be ashamed about drinking or drug problems and see them as a moral failing. Providers, for their part, may confuse symptoms of substance use disorders with age-related changes. Alcohol and Prescription Drug Misuse Among Older Adults Understanding the Risks of Combining Alcohol with Prescription and Over-the-Counter Medications The number of problems associated with the interaction of alcohol and prescription drugs is growing among older adults and is cause for concern. Results. Older adults reported low knowledge of alcohol and prescription drug safety, with women tending to be slightly more knowledgeable. More importantly, those who drank in the previous few months were less willing to talk to family and friends about how alcohol can have harmful interactions with prescription drugs, or to be an advocate for safe alcohol and prescription drug use than those.
Issue Brief 5: Prescription Medication Misuse and Abuse Among Older Adults The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and Administration on Aging (AoA) commissioned a series of Issue Briefs to address behavioral health issues that are important to older Americans. Prescription drug misuse and abuse is common among older adults because more drugs are prescribed to them and also because getting older makes the body more likely to feel the effects of drugs (just like with alcohol). Many older adults have problems because some medications don’t combine well with other medications. Because prescription drug misuse is the second most common form of illicit drug use in the United States, prescription drug misuse among older adults is an issue to examine with NSDUH prescription drug questions that were added in . Most Misused Substances Are Alcohol and Heroin Alcohol remains the most common drug of misuse among those seeking help at Senior Hope. However, recently the proportion of people admitted to Senior Hope primarily for heroin use has increased from 11% (17 out of ) in to % (six out of 26) so far in , according to OASAS data.
The SAMHSA's National Survey on Drug Use and Health revealed dramatic increases in illicit drug use in older adults, including nonmedical use of prescription drugs among women aged 60 to Overall, alcohol was the most frequently reported primary substance of abuse for . adverse reactions among older adults, as their bodies detoxify and eliminate medications and alcohol more slowly CHALLENGES TO DIAGNOSIS It can also be difficult to diagnose prescription drug misuse and abuse in older adults, making it likely that actual prevalence among this population is higher than reported. Substance abuse, particularly of alcohol and prescription drugs, among adults 60 and older is one of the fastest growing health problems facing the country. Yet, even as the number of older adults suffering from these disorders climbs, the situation remains underestimated, underidentified, underdiagnosed, and . Increasing rates of prescription and illicit drug misuse among seniors notwithstanding, alcohol remains the substance most commonly used and abused by adults over % of individuals in this age group fulfill the criteria for alcohol use disorder according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (Fourth Edition), and % for alcohol addiction.