Drug overdose rates hit a new high

Drug overdose rates hit a new high

Madeline Miller , Staff Writer

 Drug overdose rates among teens and adults are at an all time high in the United States. The danger of drug usage is causing the loss of lives to increase every year. Reducing this statistic may become crucial as it continues to rise.

 

 According to the CDC, overdose is the highest cause of injury-related death in the U.S, and it continues to increase every year. From 2020 to 2021 the overdose deaths rose 15%, now surpassing 100,000. Between 2019 and 2020, drug overdose increased by 94%. These statistics are a clear indication of the power substances hold. Over a span of two years, teen deaths have increased from 492 to 1,146. As scary as these numbers may seem, there are ways to lower these numbers and hopefully save the lives of others.

 

 Although mortality rates are continuing to increase, drug usage is not. According to surveys, grades 8-12 have all reduced drug usage by at least 5% within the past few years. This means that teens are using more dangerous drugs such as opioids, which have larger risks. With these drugs being put into play, the chances of death will continue to rise. 

 

 When it comes to prescribed painkillers such as opioids, there are ways to prevent people from using them. A priority of many health facilities is getting better management of prescribing these drugs. If a doctor requires a check-up before increasing the amount of pills given, it could prevent  fueling an addiction. There is also a new medication that has the ability to reverse an opioid overdose called Naloxone. This medicine is a non-addictive drug that is used when a person has overdosed on an opioid. 

 

 Controlling this rising issue has become a primary goal for many health professionals. Nonprofit organizations and hotlines have been created as attempts to better this issue, and many are continuing to be created. Solving this country-wide crisis is no easy task, and there is not one solution that could work for everyone. However, spreading awareness and ways to help with addictions will be useful when it comes to lowering the sky-high statistics.