6 Hamilton Opioid Crisis By the Numbers
Controlling and eliminating abuse of opioid drugs in the world and America in general, as well as Michigan and Flint in particular.
In the United States in 2017, a total of 70,237 drug overdose deaths were reported. That totaled nearly 22 persons per 100,000 population. That figure is up by nearly 10% over the 2016 totals, the two most-recent years reported by the Centers for Disease Control and other governmental agencies.
In Michigan during 2017, a total of 2,033 overdose deaths involving opioid drugs were reported. That totaled nearly 21 persons per 100,000 population, slightly below the national average.
WHAT IS BEING FOUGHT:
Opioids — mainly synthetic pain-relief drugs other than methadone — are the main driver of drug overdose deaths. Opioids were involved in 68% of all U.S. drug overdose deaths in 2017, according to the Centers for Disease Control.
FOUND ALMOST EVERYWHERE:
Some of the generic names these opioids are known by include hydrocodone (Vicodin), oxycodone (OxyContin), oxymorphine, morphine, codeine, heroin and fentanyl.
WHY SO HARMFUL:
When prescribed by doctors for pain relief, opioid drugs are highly addictive for some patients. They trigger the release of endorphins, our brain’s feel-good neurotransmitters. Endorphins muffle the perception of pain and boost feelings of pleasure. Some people unintentionally or intentionally seek to repeat this feeling, and become addicted.
BEST TREATMENT METHOD:
Several medications including buprenorphine, methadone and extended release naltrexone are effective for treatment of opioid overuse. Long-term Opioid / MAT services (Medically Assisted Treatment) through qualified experts such as Hamilton Community Health Network offers the best option to overcome opioid addiction.