Research studies show that the state of Arizona loses at least one life each day as a result of a drug overdose involving prescription medications, such as opioid pain relief drugs.
Even with so many natural attractions and more, some people in Arizona abuse drugs. some of these people start taking these substances rather innocently. For instance, if you become addicted to prescription drugs, it could be because a doctor wrote you a prescription for the treating of a condition that you were dealing with.
That said, the NSDUH - the National Survey on Drug Use and Health - reported that the rates of prescription drug abuse in Arizona are among the top in the United States. For instance, from 2010 to 2011, more than 6 percent of residents in the state aged 12 years and above were taking these substances for a non-medical reason.
Benzodiazepines, prescription pain relief medications, and opiates are the most commonly abused of all prescription medications. Many people abuse these drugs because of various reasons, including but not limited to:
Although many people in Arizona as elsewhere across the United States assume that prescription drugs are much safer than street drugs, this is not the case. In fact, abusing these medications can cause you to suffer as much as you would if you were taking drugs like cocaine and methamphetamine.
This is why it is not exactly surprising that emergency rooms in Arizona reported an increase of more than 100 percent in the number of drug overdoses involving opioids from 2008 through to 2013. Arrests involving drivers who were intoxicated on these drugs also increased by close to 99 percent during the same period.
The various dangers of abusing prescription drugs are quite numerous, and some even lead to fatal outcomes. For instance, prescription opioids can cause you to suffer the following - even when you are taking them exactly as your doctor recommended:
If you become addicted to prescription drugs like opioids, you could also increase your risk of abusing heroin and later also becoming addicted to it. This would be a grave outcome especially when you consider the fact that heroin is both highly dangerous and illicit.
Abusing prescription medications is a complex problem. Although the state of Arizona has been adopting a proactive approach in ending this problem, you will still need a highly comprehensive and compassionate recovery program to ensure that you stop engaging in this from of drug taking.
That said, opioids have been responsible for the greatest number of drug related deaths reported in Arizona. From 2013 onwards, for instance, the stat saw an increase of more than 76 percent in the number of deaths linked to this class of prescription medications. By 2017, this number had increased to a total of 928 fatalities. This was at a rate of more than 13 deaths for every segment of 100,000 people in Arizona.
The largest increase involved deaths linked to synthetic opioids apart from methadone - mostly involving fentanyl. This was because of the 7-fold increase that was reported between 2012 and 2017 - from a total of 36 deaths to a total of 267 deaths at the end of the study period.
By 2017, prescription opioids were linked to a total of 414 deaths. The same year, heroin was involved in overdose deaths that increased from 101 to 334 fatalities between 2012 and 2017.
But what are the reasons behind these worrying trends? Essentially, the main culprit could be the rise in the number of prescriptions that doctors have been writing to patients across the state.
In 2017, for instance, physicians, doctors, and other medical health service providers in Arizona write a total of 61 prescriptions for opioids for every segment of 100 people in the state. This number was higher than the national average of 58.7 prescriptions that were written for the same segment of people.
Of all the new cases of HIV that were reported in the United States in 2016, a total of 778 happened in Arizona. 12.4 percent of the males included in this number contracted the condition through intravenous drug use and male to male contact while 22.5 percent of the female patients contracted it due to intravenous drug use, involving substances such as prescription medications.
Another problem linked to prescription drug abuse is the rising number of cases involving hepatitis C. From the annual averages between 2013 and 2016, for instance, it was estimated that more than 62000 people were living with this condition in Arizona. Of this number, some had contracted the condition in the course of abusing prescription drugs.
There are various programs and processes in place designed to reduce the rates of substance abuse and addiction involving prescriptions in Arizona. For instance, the state has a Good Samaritan Law that effectively protects anyone who reports a drug overdose incident from facing legal charges.
Apart from these preventative measures, it is also possible to receive high quality addiction treatment and rehabilitation services in the state. These services are provided by both inpatient and outpatient drug rehab centers, and there are many such facilities scattered across Arizona.
If you are addicted to alcohol or drugs, it is imperative that you look for professional help as soon as you possibly can. However, you might not know where to start or the options that are open to you. Similarly, you may have little to no idea about the differences between the different treatment facilities and the programs they have in store for their patients.
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