AMERICAN OPIOIDS EPIDEMIC
It seems like every year we hear about another adverse side effect of pharmaceutical opioid drugs. Yes, there is the rampant death toll from these drugs. The fact that pills are supposed to help people and instead end up killing them is a frequent headliner in news and media.
Most of the headlines I see on America’s addiction crisis are related to the opioid epidemic, and rightly so. Opiates account for a significant portion of our nation's drug crisis. But it’s not the only drug to be aware of.
When we hear the words, “HIV outbreak” odds are we think of Africa, or maybe the United States in the early to mid-1990s. Even if we consider an “HIV outbreak” as occurring on American soil, we instantly assume cloud-shrouded high rises, sprawling urban metropolis, and downtrodden poor neighborhoods tucked back into the industrial districts.
Opioid painkillers are a class of drugs which started off seeming like a good idea but which instead ended up creating the worst addiction epidemic that our nation has likely ever seen.
In light of what may be the country’s worst substance abuse epidemic, the American people look high and low for answers on how they can do their part to resolve the addiction crisis. This is especially true if they had addiction touch their own life or the life of someone they cared about.
On January 23rd, 2019 New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy officially added opioid addiction to the growing list of "eligible illnesses" treatable through the state’s medical marijuana program. New Jersey has suffered considerably with an opioid addiction epidemic. We can understand their desire to find effective remedies for opiate addiction. Medical marijuana treatment, however, is not such a remedy.
The U.S. struggles in the grip of an opioid crisis—perhaps the worst addiction epidemic that our nation has ever seen. And in the last few years, a new strain of opioids has entered the scene, creating a surge in the addiction crisis and a resulting spike in the death toll.
The New Year is well underway, giving us opportunities for thoughtful introspection on how we can make 2019 not just a good year, but a great one.
Overcoming the opioid crisis will only be accomplished with the “blood, toil, tears and sweat“ (to quote Winston Churchill) of hundreds of thousands or even millions of people just like you. Learn how you can help.
It’s no longer a news story that our nation is struggling with an opioid addiction epidemic. It’s been going on for some time. This is an epidemic that started out with opioid pain relievers, and even though other opioid addictions have cropped up since then, a decent piece of the pie chart that is the American opioid addiction crisis is still comprised of pain reliever addiction.