Certain Medications Linked to Homicide Rates
A recent study conducted in Finland revealed a possible linkage between painkillers and sedatives and an increased risk of committing homicide by those to use the meds.
Research Reveals Shocking Correlation
According to Forbes, researchers in Finland were able to put together collective data from a sample pool of 1,000 men, and women whom were all convicted of homicide between 2003 and 2011.
After gaining access to the drug registry of the sample individuals, researchers were able to derive a correlation between their homicide actions, and their usage of psychiatric meds like benzodiazepines such as Xanax, Klonopin, Valium, anti-depressants, opiate-based painkillers, and anti-inflammatory painkillers.
Statistics Prove Increased Homicide Rates
The individual results were that using sedatives correlated with an increased homicide risk of 45%; using opiate painkillers correlated with a 92% increased risk; and using anti depressants correlated with a 31% increased risk.
Counter arguments to the research results stated that perhaps the individuals had been under the influence of alcohol, thus amplifying the actual effect of the meds, and although a percentage of the individuals had consumed alcohol, a large 79% of the homicides did not involve alcohol and meds at the same time.
In fact, one of the researchers, Jari Tiihonen, MD, PhD, whom is also a professor in the Department of Clinical Neuroscience at the Karolinska Institutet in Sweden, gave feedback on the results and what they could possibly mean for medication users.
Dr.Tiihonen mentioned that one explanation for the correlation is perhaps due to the documented effects of some of the drugs on failing to minimize impulsive behavior.
Another explanation is the duration of utilizing some of the mentioned drugs, such as Benzos, that has in past been linked to a host of problems to its users. By no means can Benzodiazepines not be used in regular doses as described by researchers; however, sometimes doctors prescribe larger doses than necessary, or users enlarge the doses themselves.
Long-term effects of increased doses can result in emotional instability such as failing to experience emotional responses such as fear and regret, and demonstrating abnormal aggression levels.
Future Research Needed
Thorough research is still necessary in order to conclude any factual causation between utilizing the medications, and the increased risk of homicide.
Additionally, research will have to be conducted in other countries, and perhaps with a larger pool of candidates, but one thing can be derived, and that is that such statistics, are indeed alarming and a cause for concern to the many individuals.