Over the past couple of decades, opioid addiction has transformed from a commonplace problem to a full-scale health crisis that is crippling our country. As it continues to burn through our alleyways, streets, and hospitals, the opioid epidemic is costing the country millions of dollars and (worst of all) destroying hundreds of thousands of lives in its wake. Although members of the federal government have attempted to attack the crisis head-on (even following an announcement that the tide is turning in our favor), the rate of opioid-related deaths is 5 times greater than it was in the 1990s. Overall, America’s Opioid Crisis is getting worse and doesn’t appear to be losing steam anytime soon. Let’s take a closer look and find out some more information.
Three Waves of Suffering
As part of past and current students, researchers have determined that the Opioid Crisis has developed three waves, each one deadlier than its predecessor. Here are the readouts for these phases, which showcase how severe the epidemic has become since the 90s:
- Phase 1: From 1999 to 2006, an overblown distribution of prescription opioid triggered an increase in drug-related deaths, eventually resulting in a severe heroin problem.
- Phrase 2: From 2007, doctors and other medical professionals were becoming more aware of the dangers of opioid prescriptions, while lawmakers targeted the pharmaceutical industry as a whole.
- Phase 3: From 2014 to the present time, opioids became more lethal (particularly through the emergence of synthetics like fentanyl), and these dangerous drugs were more easily accessible than before. In 2017 alone, 14.9 per 100,000 people died from opioid use, in contrast to 2.9 out of 100,000 victims in 1999.
What Triggered This Chaos?
While we cannot easily say what caused the Crisis, scientists have agreed that one of the biggest culprits behind the opioid epidemic is OxyContin, the first variation of oxycodone sold on the market. Created by Purdue Pharma, OxyContin initially received its FDA approval in 1995 and was prescribed to patients suffering from mild to debilitating pain (in the case of cancer patients or individuals recovering from surgical procedures). Under the pretense it was a low-risk medication, doctors began writing millions of prescriptions for this dangerous drug.
Seeking Treatment for Opioid Use Disorder
Opioids are extremely potent and dangerous drugs that have a high risk for abuse and addiction. If you are ever instructed to take these medications, proceed with caution. Follow the instructions to the letter and never take more than the required dose. Although they might be able to help people cope with pain (chronic or injury-related), these drugs can still wreak havoc on the mind and body. After all, opioids are currently fueling one of the most dangerous health epidemics ever experienced by America.
If you are suffering from a severe case of opioid use disorder or have a friend or loved one who is coping with this illness, get in touch with Asana Recovery today. Our professional team of counselors and healthcare experts will help you endure the painful process detox and withdrawal and guide you through each step of the rehabilitation process to help you separate yourself from these deadly painkillers.
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 attachment to opioid painkillers.