New tool hoping to help curb opioid addiction at the start

The timer first acts as a deterrent. (WKEF/WRGT)

DAYTON, Ohio (WKEF/WRGT) – More than half of all drug overdoses involve a prescription opioid, according to the CDC, but a new tool is helping fight back against those numbers by curbing addiction at the start.

Remembering exactly when, and sometimes if, you took your medicine, can be difficult as people stack more and more into their lives. But one simple device might help to fix that.

Matt Hoskins still struggles with a doctor’s script.

“It’s up to me whether I take it or not,” Hoskins said.

His struggle with addiction began 30 years ago.

“I was out with a friend one night,” Hoskins said. “We were drinking and he introduced me to crack. I tried it, and in like 4 months, it had just taken a hold of my life.”

Now he works as a counselor, using tools to help others.

Tools that include a new device that claims to help addicts at the start.

“Timer Cap is a stop watch that sits on top of a medicine bottle,” CEO of Timer Cap Larry Twersky said.

The timer first acts as a deterrent. It resets when the cap comes off, so you know if someone else has been taking your medicine.

It’s also a reminder not to overlap meds.

Twersky recently met with the FDA about his product, and said he’s hopeful people will soon see them regularly in their homes.

“We’ve been talking about putting together an opioid prevention kit that people would take home with them,” he said, “after they’re prescribed opioids for the first time.”

Hoskins is a bit skeptical of the product, but hopeful for its future.

“I just don’t think it’s realistic to think that just by putting some sort of special cap on the pill bottle is going to keep them clean,” he said, “or going to keep them from abusing the medicine.”

Doctors and pharmacists are hoping to curb the problem, and already have an attempt to curb the problem in place.

“They’re only allowing scripts to be 7 days now,” Hoskins said.

Twersky wants the caps to be standard on all bottles, saying the current packing hasn’t been changed since the 70’s. Hoskins said that sounds good in theory.

“I still feel that at least they’re trying something,” he said.

The Timer Caps run about $3 each, and you can pick them up at your local CVS or Rite Aid.

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