Tragic Celebrity Deaths Underline Need to lower Our Dependence on Pharmaceuticals

Most of us would have read about the death of singer Whitney Houston with regret and sadness. One of the finest R&B artists ever, she had reigned the sound waves during the 80’s and 90’s before drugs ravaged her voice and then her career.

However it is now becoming clear that it wasn’t only illegal drugs but prescription drugs, legally available pharmaceutical formulations, that could have been responsible for the untimely death of the singer at just 48.

Whitney Houston

Found dead in a bathtub at a Beverly Hills hotel room, it was thought that she had died after an alcohol binge or a drug overdose.

However it wasn’t alcohol that was found in that hotel room; what was found however, was a plethora of prescription medications. About half a dozen bottles of medication were found in her hotel room.

In particular it was Xanax (a drug often prescribed as an anxiety medication) that could have been responsible for the death of the pop icon.

It could have been that she drowned by slipping under the water in an intoxicated stupor or that she had overdosed, but it is clear that a significant role was played by prescription drugs in the death of the singer.

Drugs such as Valium, Xanax, Lorazepam and another sleeping pill, were all found to be present in singer’s hotel room after her death.

This tragic incident revisits the debate about the role that big pharma plays in our lives: doctors are encouraged to prescribe drugs to people, even perhaps when they may not be strictly required, with the result that pharmaceutical drugs form a big part of our everyday lives.

The death of singing star Michael Jackson and actor Heath Ledger similarly brought home the dangers of taking too many chemicals in the form of medications. In fact in recent times it is prescription medications rather than street drugs that seem to be claiming more lives of high profile victims.

Ours has become a culture of pill poppers, where every little twinge and niggle is sought to be addressed using a quick and temporary fix. We no longer try to find out the root cause of our health problems, only want a quick solution to the discomfort even if it is only temporary and is actually toxic for the body in the long run. Rather than healing the body, we seem to be more interested in silencing the body when it tries to tell us something is wrong; that something needs help.

If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, consider a rehab for prescription drugs.