You’ve heard about the continued Opioid Crisis within the United States, and perhaps you even know someone who has struggled with an addiction to pain killer pills.
While addiction certainly doesn’t discriminate, there is one group of people who have fallen prey to prescription drugs that take many by surprise: members of the Mormon community.
Especially in Utah, where one-third of residents have a prescription for painkillers, drugs and the Mormon lifestyle have become an unlikely couple.
But what are the reasons for this shocking drug use?
Read on to find out.
1. The Pressure To Be Perfect
Being a Mormon isn’t always easy.
In addition to the judgment and stigma the community often faces from the “outside world?” There is also lots of pressure from within the Mormon community to “keep sweet” and to be perfect.
Fathers must be adequate providers, and mothers must be the perfect homemakers.
Complaining, taking time for yourself, or even expressing dissatisfaction with the lifestyle are all looked down upon greatly.
As a result, many members of the Mormon community turn to prescription medication to help them to cope.
Even more alarming?
Because of the pressure the community puts on its members from such a young age, even teenagers and pre-teens within the community can easily fall prey to addiction.
As with more secular teenagers, peer pressure, bullying, and a sense of inadequacy when compared to their friends can all push Mormon teens into prescription drug abuse.
2. To Manage Physical Pain
Of course, sometimes an addiction to pain killer pills can begin even when one is using the pills for the original purpose they were prescribed for — to help with physical pain.
Especially if someone is recovering from a more serious operation?
These prescriptions can provide serious relief and even improve a patient’s quality of life. The same is true if a Mormon patient suffers from a more chronic condition that leaves them in pain.
However, our bodies adapt very quickly to this medication.
While a lower dosage taken only once in a day might be enough for pain management in the beginning, soon, our bodies develop a higher tolerance for the drug.
Now, to get the same effects as before, patients will need to take pills with a higher dose several times in a day.
This can quickly become incredibly unhealthy, and leave the patients in worse pain than before if they don’t get the drugs their bodies now depend on to function.
3. To Numb One’s Emotions
Living the Mormon lifestyle can be incredibly challenging, just as for many, it can also be incredibly rewarding.
Especially for women, who are responsible for caring for their children, keeping the house clean, and getting food on the table every meal for large families?
Sometimes, the stress of the lifestyle can be overwhelming.
Many turn to pain killers as a way to numb the symptoms of depression and anxiety that they may feel. They may initially think that they have some sort of “control” over the amount of medication that they take.
But that false sense of control erodes quickly.
Additionally, sexual abuse is a serious problem within many sects of the Mormon community. Often, these survivors aren’t believed, or, even worse, are blamed for the abuse that they suffered.
This especially makes people vulnerable to becoming addicted to pain killer pills.
4. Poor Medical Care
An unfortunate reality in the Mormon, as well as the more secular, world we live in?
Sometimes, not every medical professional will operate under an acceptable code of ethics. This allows those dealing with an addiction to pain killer pills to take part in doctor shopping.
It also helps them to get more pills and higher dosages than they actually need.
In fact, recently in Utah, a pharmacist was even arrested for prescription drug smuggling.
In addition to making money from an illicit drug trade?
Many medical professionals may also receive payouts from drug companies for prescribing these pain killers to their patients.
This makes it incredibly easy for addiction rates within the Mormon community, and the Utah community at large, to rise at alarmingly rapid rates.
5. Lack Of Accountability For The Problem
One of the main reasons for the rising addiction to pain killer pills within the Mormon community?
Because the religious, restrictive nature of the Mormon community can make many feel as though there will be consequences for asking for help. Not only do many addicts feel a deep shame. They even as though they’ve betrayed their God when taking prescription medication recreationally.
They also fear the social consequences of admitting that they have a problem.
Therapy can sometimes be looked down in the Mormon community.
This is especially true among stricter sets like the FLDS. So, not only does the community struggle to acknowledge the rising rates of addiction.
They also put a serious stigma on getting help.
Do You Own A Rehab Center For Addiction To Pain Killer Pills?
We hope that this post has helped to educate you regarding just a few of the complicated and often deeply sad reasons behind the connection between the Mormon community and pain killer pills.
If you own a rehab center or work as a mental health professional?
We know that you’re interested in providing care to those who need it.
Spend some time on our website. While there, you learn more about how to optimize your web presence and secure your site so that members of the Mormon community facing addiction can contact you confidentially.
Also, be sure to browse through our extensive collection of digital downloads of books and pamphlets on fighting addiction that you can provide to your patients.