Know the Facts
What is an Opioid?
Opioids are a class of drug that bind to opioid receptors in the body. This includes illegal drugs such as heroin and prescription pills such as oxycodone (OxyContin®), hydrocodone (Vicodin®), codeine, morphine and others.
- Regular use of opioid drugs, even as prescribed by a doctor or medical professional, can lead to dependence and can have serious risks or side effects. Before taking a prescription opioid, it is important to be aware of the risks. It’s equally as important to educate your friends, family and children about the problems associated with the misuse of opioids, or not taking opioids as prescribed.
- If you have any questions about the proper use and disposal of a prescribed medication, stop by a Walmart pharmacy today.
Be in the Know
Knowing the dangers, signs and symptoms of prescription opioid abuse can save someone’s life. Pharmacists at Walmart and Sam’s Club locations across the country are happy to speak with anyone looking to better understand the effects of prescription opioids and provide additional information. Learn more
How to Properly Dispose of Unused Prescription Pills
Safe disposal of all medications – especially opioids – is incredibly important. One of the biggest sources of misused prescriptions is from leftover medicine that people keep in their medicine cabinets. Even if you and your family would never abuse medication, excess medication presents an unnecessary risk for family members, guests, or children who might open a medicine cabinet. To help, all Walmart pharmacies have a product called DisposeRx that’s available for free to our pharmacy customers. Talk to your healthcare provider about all of the disposal options available in your community. Learn more
Signs of Opioid Misuse and Abuse
Detecting drug abuse early is the most effective way of preventing an addiction from developing. Signs and symptoms of opioid abuse can vary from individual to individual, but the most common physical and behavioral signs include withdrawing from social activities, sudden and dramatic mood swings, impulsive actions, risky actions, visiting multiple doctors to obtain more prescriptions, etc.
Prepare for the Unexpected: Get Emergency Naloxone
Naloxone is a medication that can stop an overdose and prevent death. Walmart and Sam’s Club are committed to having Naloxone behind the pharmacy counters of our stores and clubs and dispensing naloxone upon request, where allowed by state law. As an additional step, Walmart pharmacists provide Naloxone recommendations to patients who might be at risk for overdose in alignment with CDC guidelines. Ask your pharmacist about Naloxone when you pick up an opioid prescription for you or a loved one.
How to Talk to Your Teen About the Dangers of Opioids
Additional resources are available through Operation Prevention, a group formed by the DEA and Discovery Education, whose mission is to educate students about the true impacts of opioids and kick-start life-saving conversations in the home and classroom. Learn more
As stated by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, “many people don't understand why or how other people become addicted to drugs. They may mistakenly think that those who use drugs lack moral principles or willpower and that they could stop their drug use simply by choosing to. In reality, drug addiction is a complex disease, and quitting usually takes more than good intentions or a strong will. Drugs change the brain in ways that make quitting hard, even for those who want to.” Learn more
1 CDC | 2 Truth Initiative | 3 National Institute on Drug Abuse | 4 CDC | 5 National Center for Biotechnology Information