Opioid painkillers can be very addictive – the chance of developing long-term dependence on opioids increases after just five days of prescription opioid use. Long-term dependence increases the risk for addiction and overdose.
Most people who misuse opioids report getting them from a family member or friend, with or without their knowledge. To help keep your family and friends safe from opioid misuse, learn how to properly dispose of your unused drugs and how to safely secure drugs still in use. There are many things both patients and prescribers can do to reduce unnecessary opioid use and prevent opioid misuse.
CDC’s Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain is intended to improve communication between providers and patients about the risks and benefits of opioid therapy for chronic pain, improve the safety and effectiveness of pain treatment, and reduce the risks associated with long-term opioid therapy, including opioid use disorder and overdose.