Pharmaceutical Drugs Abuse On UVM Campus

More than one million people swallow, smoke, or inject sedatives and mood change drugs into their bodies every day, according to National Institute on Drug Abuse. “I’ve never taken a pharmie I didn’t like,” claims a first year female. “Sobriety is a vacation for me.” That notion appeared to be the consensus within one social sphere, but others agreed with a divergent first-year male who alleged, “I don’t really like them, to be honest. I don’t like paying two or three bucks for an indefinite buzz. “It’s like great, my muscles are relaxed.” In 2001, 36 million Americans had used prescription-type drugs non-medically at least once in their lifetime. Since the disclosure of this statistic it has only increased, says the National Household Survey on Drug Abuse. When asked to approximate the percentage of friends who use non-prescribed pharmaceutical drugs, students’ responses were either 3-5% or 80-90%, with little in between. The majority of UVMers asked launched their pharmie “eating” days during the latter years of high school. “Kids just passed them to you in the hall,” says one sophomore. Others’ addictions are remnants from bona-fide prescriptions. “I had shoulder surgery a few years ago and was prescribed a ton of hydro-codeine. “When I couldn’t sleep, I’d pop one and have a drink. After that, I had it kickin’ around. That’s when it got to be fun.” Pain killers and stimulants are more widespread on UVM’s campus than dreads, say most students. “Ritalin is like candy. Everyone supposedly has A.D.D.” It seems that some professionals tend to be indiscriminate when it involves prescribing stimulants. “My doctor’s an idiot,” said one sophomore. “He prescribes me three times what I need of Aderol and Ritalin, which is ridiculous because nobody takes both.” Others skip the intermediary and go straight to the source. A UVM junior divulges his chief consultant: “I’ve got a pharmacist friend who sells pretty much anything for a buck a piece.” Those with prescriptions or links with the pharmacy world seem to be outnumbered by people with peer connections. “Somebody gets hurt – there’s a new P.K. source,” says one UVM student. Kids with supplied parents are able to get their hands on the most expensive drugs. “My friend’s dad has two prosthetic legs. He hooked me up with Oxycontin all the time — stole them from his dad.” “Finals, midterms, and exams are the best time to sell Ritalin and Aderol. The rest of the year, you can sell lots of hydrocodone, or whatever else crosses your path,” says one dealer. Students rely on stimulants for concentration and studying, and pain killers for festivity. Nearly every student claims to have tried Aderol or Ritalin and most use it most during the school year. And just how does the average college student afford drugs on a budget that hardly allows one to see monthly shows, or even pay for books? Pharmies offer more bang for your buck. “Most are pretty cheap, except Oxy’s. Those run like $40 for a 40 (mg). Percosets and Klonopins are around two dollars. Good ones are three bucks and orange.” “Pain killers are cost efficient. Pop a K-pin, drink two beers, and you’re set,” says a UVM student. Regardless of the modest price of a pill, some admit to spending a lofty annual fee for pharmaceuticals. “Yearly, I easily spend $500 on pharmies,” says a first year. That’s equal to the cost of a snowboard or skis, to put it into perspective. When asked why they do them, there seems to be a multitude of answers. “Why do any drug?” says a birkie-wearing, muumuu sporting first year, “- because it f*cks you up.” Others agreed that they just wanted “to get high, to feel good, to study.” One first year female affirms that Xanax had complete anesthetic effects when she pierced her cartilage earlier this year. Another claims that it “gives me a total body high. “I feel like a human jell-O jiggler.” “It makes boredom interesting,” asserts a sophomore male. In fact, rumor has it that the best time for popping a P.K. is “when you’re chillin’ out or watching movies.” Students say that consuming pharmies orally and snuffing or “blowing” is the only way to go. Smoking pharmaceuticals, on the other hand, is not a good idea. “My friend smoked Vicodin once. He turned pale and passed out.” Though blowing is the most common form of intake among interviewed students, it may entail nosebleeds. “I blew the wrong shit one time and I wanted to rip my nose off,” says a first year male. Some plagued with insomnia, or boredom, “pop a Vicodin and take a shot and you’ll have the best sleep in years.” Evidently, Vicodin is the multifaceted drug of choice. Aside from a sleep aid, “I take it to help me study,” said one student. But for a sure-fire all-night pick-me-up, Aderol and Ritalin do the trick. “Two days ago, I had a crazy econ exam,” says a first year male. “I took some Addy, stayed up all night, and aced the test.” In fact, that may be the med of choice among more studious undergrads. “Aderol makes you think and keeps you awake – a great college companion.” Otherwise, it can just be used as a replacement drug. “It’s just poor man’s coke,” says a first year male. “That’s why middle aged people do coke and kids do Addy.” This is followed by a surge of concurrence among his cohorts. Not all are gung-ho about pain killers. “It wears you down. After a while, you become irritable if you don’t have a pain killer.” Some didn’t like the reoccurring memory loss, claiming that it “messes with your psyche.” Though Oxycontin, used for cancer related and other debilitating conditions, is among the most expensive pain killers on the market, many faced ugly encounters with the drug. “I hate Oxycontin,” says one first year male, “It makes you aggressive and itch. That’s just a bad combination.” If a newborn can’t count on his or her mother for protection, then one certainly can’t trust peers to save ones’ life. A high school senior learned the hard way when he overdosed at a party. While these are the most extreme cases, usually impulsion results from the drug. Many UVMers have witnessed fights break out. “These kids at a party took Oxycontin and started beating each other up. They get really emotional.” Regardless of the negative effects, several students still declared Oxy “the best drug out there.” Since tracking down pharmaceuticals without prescriptions is so effortless- even websites offer everything from Vioxx to Viagra — it’s no wonder people misuse drugs. When asked if he’d ever stop using pharmies, a first year male responded: “Yeah, sooner or later I’ll die.”