study risk opioid painkiller misuse unemployment

A recent study from Columbia University found that former workers who are unemployed have a high risk for misusing prescription opioids, and those that are entirely out of the workforce are at the highest risk of abusing prescription stimulants.

Columbia University researchers analyzed a sample of 58,486 adults who were aged 26 and older, using data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health. Results showed that unemployed participants had the highest chance (seven percent) of misusing prescription opioids, and those completely out of the workforce reported a two percent likelihood of misusing prescription stimulants. There were also more nonmedical users of prescription opioids than prescription stimulants, the study found.

The risk for misuse was highest in adults between ages 26 and 34 who were unemployed since their age group was already at risk of nonmedical prescription drug misuse

According to Dr. Martins, it’s important for physicians to be keenly aware of their patients’ employment issues and the associated risk for… (continue reading)