Opioid addiction has been linked to dental procedures as the drugs are regularly used during the extraction of wisdom teeth. Used in anaesthesia and as a pain killer, opioids are known to be addictive and even small doses over a short period can lead to addiction problems.
According to statistics:
– 25% of patients prescribed a short course of opioids were still on the drug a year later
– 75% of opioid abusers began with drugs prescribed by a dentist or doctor
– 80% of heroin addicts started on opioids
It is also estimated that children prescribed opioids in elementary school “have a one-third chance of lifetime illicit use”.
Further information on the topic can be found at https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/10/opinion/dentists-opioids-addiction-.html.