(NaturalNews) There is simply no denying the epidemic of drug addiction in the United States of America, or that this addiction is primarily centered around legalized pharmaceutical drugs rather than illicit street drugs. A recent analysis by the blog The American Dream highlights 18 shocking facts and statistics that show just how bad this addiction really is, and that it is only continuing to get worse.
Drug companies work very hard and spend obscene amounts of money convincing both the public and mainstream doctors that the latest blockbuster drugs will improve public health and well-being. Big Pharma, in fact, spends billions of dollars a year just on television advertising for drugs, which is a crucial tactic for maintaining this medical status.
But what few people realize is just how rapidly society is becoming dependent on pharmaceutical drugs, and particularly in the US where, in a recent survey, more than 50 percent of Americans admitted that they took at least one prescription drug within the past month. These are just prescription drugs, of course -- millions more Americans regularly take over-the-counter medications like aspirin, cough medicines, and sleeping aids.
The Wall Street Journal recently reported that more than one quarter of all American children and teens now take prescription drugs on a regular basis, too -- and this percentage is on the rise as well. Many of these children are taking dangerous psychiatric medications like Ritalin and Risperdal for so-called behavioral problems like attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
Foster children, especially, bear most of the brunt of this fraudulent mental health treatment industry, which pumps them up with psychiatric medications even when they have no legitimate behavioral problems. In some cases, foster children are up to 53 times more likely than regular children to be taking five or more psychiatric medications at a time.
As far as adults are concerned, the percentage of adult women in the US that take antidepressants is higher than it is anywhere else in the world. American children are also three times more likely than children in Europe to be prescribed antidepressants. And the overall use of antidepressants in the US among all age groups doubled between 1996 and 2005, according to statistics.
And when all is said and done, pharmaceutical drugs, not illicit street drugs, take the first-place spot for causing the most drug-related injuries and deaths in the US. At least 200,000 Americans are now killed every year by pharmaceutical drugs, which is higher than the number of deaths caused by traffic accidents.