5 Facts About the Opiate Crisis in the US
You hear about it on the news – the opioid epidemic – destroying lives and causing opioid overdose deaths everyday. Here are 5 facts about the crisis.
The opiate crisis in the US is affecting people all over the country, in any economical status, and any race. Opioids are a type of drug that includes heroin as well as the pain relievers; Oxycodone, Hydrocodone, Codeine, Morphine and also Fentanyl.
According to NIDA, more than 115 American die daily because of opioid overdose deaths. The opioid epidemic is something that you hear government officials talk about, you hear about it on the news and in your neighborhood. Continue reading to learn 5 Facts that we know about the opiate crisis in the US.
The opioid epidemic is a public health emergency
Opioids began back in the 1990’s, when the pharmaceutical companies assured the workers in the medical community that those using them would not develop an addiction. History shows this to not be the case, and the increase of the production and distribution of opioid medications has proven a large quantity of misuse of these medications.
Our government has established the opiate crisis in the US as a public health emergency. The terrible consequences of the opiate crisis in the US has lead to a rise in opioid overdose deaths as well as a rise in babies experiencing withdrawal after birth due to use of opioids during pregnancy.
According to the U.S Department of Heath and Human Services the federal government is also focusing on five priorities and they are:
- Better addiction prevention
- Better overdose reversing drugs
- Better data
- Better pain management
- Better research
Opioid overdose deaths are breaking records
According to the CDC, opioids have taken the lives of more than 42,000 people due opioid overdose deaths in just 2016. At the time this information was taken, this was more than 40% of all opioid overdose deaths.
To provide more information related to the trend in the usage of opioids, from 2000 to 2016 over 600,000 people died from opioid overdose deaths. The amount of people affected by the opioid epidemic is overwhelming. It’s easy to say that the majority of the people in the United States have either been directly impacted by the opiate crisis in the US or know someone who has.
Prescription Opioid use and misuse has become a problem
As stated on the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, in 2015 around 91.8 million adults in the United States were users of prescription opioid painkillers. Of that 91.8 million adults, around 11.5 million of those adults misused the prescription medications. Below are the following reasons as to why these adults misused the medications:
- To allow them to sleep
- To experiment
- To relax
- To get that high feeling
- To change emotions / feelings
- To change; increase or decrease the effects of other drugs
- To relieve pain
The opiate crisis in the US and the mumbers
The opioid epidemic has been recorded by the U.S Department of Health and Human Services and they have put together a list of numbers from year 2016. The numbers are scary, especially when you think about how many people this epidemic is affecting.
In 2016, the following things happened in relation to the Opioid epidemic according to the U.S Department of Health and Human Services:
- 116 people died daily from Opioid overdose deaths
- 11.5 million people misused prescription medication
- 42,249 people died from overdoses
- 2.1 million people reported Opioid use disorder
- 948,000 people used heroin
- 170,000 people used heroin for the first time
- 2.1 million people misused prescription Opioids for the first time
- 17,087 deaths due to overdosing on commonly prescribed medications
- 19,413 deaths due to overdosing on synthetic Opioids
- 15,469 deaths due to overdosing on heroin
- 504 billion in economic costs
Help is out there for those suffering form the opiate crisis in the US.
It’s important to remember that even though the opioid epidemic is a scary, help is out there. If you or your loved one is suffering from an opioid addiction, treatment centers such as WhiteSands, are here to help. WhiteSands has board-certified doctors that are trained in helping those with substance abuse addictions. Help is just a phone call away, don’t wait until it’s too late. Call today to speak to someone who can help (877) 855-3470.
If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the WhiteSands Treatment at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.