Misuse of opioids has reached epidemic proportions nationwide. Opioids can be essential when treating pain and helpful when administered by a doctor in small doses for a short amount of time. A lack of following these criteria can lead to opioid dependence, addiction and often overdose. Utah has continually held the title for the highest index category for opioid usage for over a decade. While rates of alcohol, tobacco, and other illicit drug use are historically low, opioid misuse in Utah is becoming increasingly alarming. Despite official efforts to create interventions, campaigns, anti-opioid marketing, and prescription take back programs, the numbers continue to rise. Our study at Utah Valley University was a descriptive cross-sectional survey. The purpose was to assess attitudes, perceptions and self-reported practices of pain management following injuries incurred as an athlete. The Likert scale questionnaire given to student athletes asked questions regarding student's mental health in addition to their use of opioids to manage pain. Descriptive statistics were calculated on categorical variables, results from the survey compared differences in attitudes, perceptions, and practices by sex, age, and student status. Students often lacked information on alternatives to opioids in their pain management needs. Furthermore, survey results showed that there is room for educational interventions to ensure that injuries sustained in their athletic careers do not become life-long catalysts for chronic pain and addiction.
University / Institution: Utah Valley University
Format: In Person
SESSION B (10:45AM-12:15PM)
Area of Research: Health & Medicine
Faculty Mentor: Heather Thiesset
Location: Union Building, SALTAIR ROOM (11:25am)