Many Former NFL Players Still Take Opioid Painkillers Years Later

    Almost half of retired National Football League (NFL) players who reported taking opioid painkillers in 2010 were still taking the medication in 2019, a new study finds.

    Former NFL players who continued to take opioids were more likely to report moderate to severe depressive symptoms and low mental health-related quality of life, HealthDay reports.

    “It’s hard to imagine that bodily pain doesn’t contribute to continued opioid use, as retired NFL athletes may rely on opioids in an effort to manage chronic pain that has developed as a result of an accumulation of orthopedic injuries during an NFL career,” study co-author Zachary Mannes said in a university news release. “It is possible that NFL retirees with depressive symptoms are more likely to self-medicate their mental health symptoms and emotional pain through use of opioids.”

    By Partnership Staff
    September 2020

    Published

    September 2020

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