Texas Opioid Overdoses are Increasing
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According to recent news reports from Houston Public Media, opioid overdose deaths in Texas have been rising at a rate of about ten percent a year since 2014.1 As other states across the U.S. also grapple with increasing opioid overdose deaths, the need for high-quality addiction treatment continues to be high.

Surprisingly, new data released in April of 2018 found that Americans are filling far fewer opioid prescriptions than they used to. In fact, the U.S. as a whole showed an 8.9 percent average decrease in the number of opioid prescriptions filled by retail and mail-order pharmacies. The number of opioid prescriptions filled dropped in all 50 states, including Texas.2

Although fewer opioid prescriptions are being filled, many Americans are still abusing prescription opioids and illegal opioid drugs like heroin and fentanyl, putting themselves at risk for overdose and death.

Causes of Opioid Overdoses

There are several different causes of opioid overdoses in America, including the abuse of heroin, natural and semi-synthetic opioids, methadone, synthetic opioids, and prescription opioids. Here’s how the numbers break down, according to 2016 data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).3

Cause of Death

Number of Deaths

Overdose deaths involving any opioid

42,249

Overdose deaths involving heroin

15,469

Overdose deaths involving natural and semi-synthetic opioids

14,487

Overdose deaths involving methadone

3,373

Overdose deaths involving synthetic opioids other than methadone

19,413

*Deaths involving prescription opioids

18,893

*2014 data from the CDC

Signs of Opioid Overdose

In 2016, 42, 249 people died from overdosing on opioids.4 As the opioid crisis in America rages on, it’s becoming increasingly important for loved ones of addicts to be able to recognize the signs of opioid overdose.

If a friend or a loved one is experiencing an opioid overdose, here are some of the physical signs you can look for.5

  • Vomiting
  • Choking sounds
  • Being awake but unresponsive
  • Slow, shallow breathing
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Bluish purple skin (among lighter-skinned people) or grayish skin (among darker-skinned people)
  • Limpness
  • Purplish fingernails and lips
  • Pale, clammy face
  • Slow or erratic heartbeat

If you think your loved one is overdosing on opioids, you should call 911 immediately.

How to Get Help for Opioid Addiction

The statistics are clear: opioid addiction is a serious disease with deadly consequences. If you or someone you know is addicted to opioids, he or she should seek professional treatment immediately.

Medically-assisted detox is the first step in this process and is typically how a comprehensive addiction treatment program should begin. Detox should never be attempted at home, as the withdrawal process can be very unpredictable and dangerous. Completing this process at a detox center is the safest and most comfortable way to overcome a physical addiction.

Once detox is completed, a long-term drug rehab program can provide the structure, support, and behavioral therapy needed to overcome the psychological addiction. Some opioid addicts will be resistant to treatment and many are slow to even admit that they have a problem. Conducting a well-planned intervention may help a loved one see the extent of their substance use problem and commit to enrolling in rehab.

Long-Term Drug Rehab in Texas

Nova Recovery Center provides 90-day drug rehab programs in Texas for adults who are suffering from all kinds of drug and alcohol addictions. We also offer inpatient and outpatient programs, so you can find the right fit for you or your loved one’s lifestyle and treatment needs.

If you’re ready to talk to someone about getting help for an opioid addiction or you need intervention assistance, call (512) 605-2955   and one of our admissions specialists will gladly help you get started.

 

References:

  1. https://www.houstonpublicmedia.org/articles/news/2018/04/19/280450/opioid-deaths-in-texas-rise/
  2. https://www.houstonpublicmedia.org/articles/news/2018/04/19/280489/new-data-americans-filling-far-fewer-opioid-prescriptions/
  3. http://www.drugwarfacts.org/chapter/causes_of_death
  4. https://www.hhs.gov/opioids/about-the-epidemic/
  5. http://harmreduction.org/issues/overdose-prevention/overview/overdose-basics/recognizing-opioid-overdose/