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Paula Abdul: Pain Killer Addiction: The Consequences


Tuesday, June 2nd, 2009 Paula Abdul: Pain Killer Addiction: The Consequences

It is understood that Paula Abdul has decided to open up about her addiction to pain killers, the American Idol judge tells all in a frank and candid interview with Ladies’ Home Journal, Ani Esmailian (05 05 09). Furthermore, it is reported that she was involved in a car accident back in 1992, and she also lived through a plane crash in 1993, this has left her in immense pain.

From her own perspective, Paula argues that the pain is suffered on both a mental and physical level.

However, with reference to another article in The Feed by Eric Deggans (06 05 09), there is a suggestion that Abdul had long denied any form of drug misuse or alcohol abuse in the past, blaming that she was suffering from exhaustion. In her interview with Deggans, she argues that her dancing days have ‘forced her to take heavy amounts of painkillers that led to addiction.’ This is further bourne out by Esmailian, when it is stated that The American Idol judge has been denying any kind of drug or alcohol abuse for years, but we all knew better. It had to be the only explanation for her odd behavior.’

According to the writer, he has interviewed Abdul on a number of occasions and concluded that ’she was high on something.; In addition he argued that ’she slurred words, seemed to lose her train of thought easily and generally acted as if her brain was wrapped in gauze.’

Moreover, in a recent interview with ABC News’ Nightline’s Cynthia McFadden, Paula denied any kind of drug use claiming her medical records were clean and wouldn’t show any kind of prescription drugs.

Notably, Cynthia asked Paula, “So let me just ask you the question straight up. Absolutely crystal clear you have not abused prescription drugs?”

“Never. I’ve never been drunk in my life. I don’t like it. It’s not my thing. Spending money on clothes and shoes that’s another thing. No, no, no, no, no. Will not take those drugs. And you can check my medical records there is nothing like that. I was never on Oxycontin or Vicadin or anything like that. I was on nerve medicine and anti-inflammatories,” said Paula.

Nevertheless, it has been recognised that painkiller addiction is regarded as an ‘Invisible Epidemic’. More significantly, much has been documented on the issues surrounding alcohol and drug addiction. In contrast however, information regarding prescription drug abuse and addiction only seems to surface when someone famous has a problem and needs treatment or dies.

It is of crucial importance that prescription drug addiction has been the most underreported drug abuse problem in the nation (National Institute of Drug Abuse). It is also the least understood. Addiction to and withdrawal from prescription drugs can be more dangerous than other substances because of the insidious nature of these drugs.

Two types of the most commonly abused drugs are opioids and benzodiazepines. Opioids are generally used to control pain. Benzodiazepines, or tranquilizers, are used to manage anxiety. These drugs are prescribed for short-term use such as acute pain and anxiety that is in reaction to a specific event. They may also be prescribed for chronic pain or generalized anxiety.

A useful example has been offered, Sylvia s a 44 year-old radiologist, former president of the PTA, and prescription drug addict. “I lost everything when the police raided my house looking for prescription drugs. My husband and two little children were home that night. I was so ashamed I couldn’t even look at them. I was arrested, put in handcuffs and locked up. My husband divorced me. My children were taken away from me. I knew I had hit bottom.”

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