When it comes to people who have earned the distinction of “American icons,” you don’t need to look any further than the “King” himself: Elvis Presley. Rising from his backwoods Mississippi and Tennessee roots to become a sensation of music, Presley was adored for his deep, sensual singing voice, and his incredible stage presence. Boys idolized him for his charm, while girls adored him for his clean-cut good looks. For nearly two decades, this incredible singer dominated the charts and even went on to star in a collection of movies including Love Me Tender (1956), Jailhouse Rock (1957), Blue Hawaii (1961), and Viva Las Vegas (1964). Years after his death, people are still impersonating him on the Vegas Strip, and his image has continued to be parodied in cartoons across the U.S. However, fans of Presley know a dark side to his fame and fortune, culminating in his tragic drug-related death in 1977. Let’s take a closer look at his addiction story.

A Crisis in the Making

Ironically, a singer that is still popular today died from a substance that is unfortunately common even in this decade. According to reports from the media, Elvis Presley had been a chronic opioid abuser and had frequently consumed concoctions that included antihistamines, tranquilizers (specifically Valium), barbiturates, Quaaludes, sleeping pills, and even performance enhancing drugs (hormones). Officials during the time confirmed that Presley had been keeping bottles of these drugs in his medicine cabinet and had been harboring a stash of pills that would never be prescribed by a doctor. Even Dr. George Nichopoulos, also called “Dr. Nick,” the King’s personal physician, explained how he would give Presley sugar pills in a desperate attempt to stop the addictive behavior.

An Untimely and Disturbing Death

Following his tragic death on August 16, 1977, doctors examined Presley’s body and determined he had died from cardiac arrhythmia and a possible myocardial infarction (heart attack) brought on by drug use. As embarrassing and sad as this may sound, Presley had been sitting on the toilet at the time of his death, and, as the reports indicate, he had attempted to force a bowel movement, which resulted in his heart attack. After the coroner’s report came in, though, doctors confirmed that the singer had consumed the opioids Dilaudid, Percodan, Demerol, and codeine prior to his death, as well as Quaaludes.

Although his life may have been riddled with problems, though, we can easily say that Elvis will always live on as an icon of America.

Seeking Treatment for Drug Abuse or Addiction     

Throughout history, many wonderful people have been claimed by dangerous drugs, and, unfortunately, hundreds more are dying as a result of overdoses each year. However, you do not have to be among the casualties of the Opioid Crisis, crystal meth scares, or additional drug-related incidences poisoning our country. You can take a stand and overcome your mental illness. With the right amount of perseverance, patience, and love, anything is possible.

Are you suffering from a severe case of drug addiction? Is your friend or loved one also suffering from this sickness? In both cases, get in touch with Asana Recovery today. Our professional team of counselors and healthcare experts will help you endure the painful process of drug withdrawal and detox and guide you along the rocky road of rehabilitation. Soon enough, you will experience a faster and much more efficient recovery.

If you want to find out more about our residential treatment or supervised detoxification/withdrawal programs or enroll in one of these programs today, we are ready and waiting to speak with you at your leisure and your disclosure. Call Asana now at (949) 438-4504 to learn how you can overcome your mental illness and take an extra step toward becoming a healthier person.


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