Pain medications causing 17,000 deaths a year, 46 per day across the U.S.

CLEVELAND - Pain medications can relieve a lot of suffering, but they can also be dangerous if they're not taken properly. 

Over-the-counter acetaminophen, which is found in more than 600 different medicines, makes it easy to overdose without even realizing it.

Doctors say too much of the drug can damage organs.

On Your Side Advice: Always check labels for acetaminophen or ask your pharmacist.

When it comes to opioids like Vicodin, ask your doctor for the smallest dose necessary, and the fewest number of pills. 

Up to 46 people in the U.S. die from legal pain pills daily, that's 17,000 deaths a year, a four-fold jump since 1999. 

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