The Mayo Clinic has released a new study on the amount of prescription drugs Americans consume. The total amount is staggering. The study found that 70% of Americans are on at least on prescription, more than half are on at least two prescriptions and 20% are on five or more prescriptions.
The study determined that 17 percent of those studied were prescribed antibiotics, 13 percent were taking antidepressants and 13 percent were on opioids. Doing some quick math, 70% of 310 million is 217 million. 13% of 217 million is 28,210,000. If I’m reading the numbers right, roughly 28 million Americans are taking opioid pain killers and another 28 million are on antidepressants, although some may be taking both.
For comparison, there are roughly 2 million heroin users, with roughly 700,000 addicts, according to the CIA. That means prescription opioid usage outstrips heroin usage by 14 to 1.