The use of prescription and illicit opioids led to over 33,000 deaths in the U.S. in 2015, a figure that has quadrupled since 1999, according to the CDC. The problem stems from prescription painkillers like OxyContin and fentanyl, which share close similarities with drugs like heroin and morphine, but are widely prescribed to people in moderate or severe pain. While the medications can help people in pain live normal lives, they carry a big risk of addiction, and drug rehab centers in Utah and around the country have noted a big increase in patients with opioid addictions. But what can we do about it? How can states resolve the growing problem? Continue reading
With prescription drug abuse rampant in the U.S. and many people turning to heroin as a quick and easy substitute, what early warning systems are in place to help spot a potential or existing problem with drugs or alcohol? Equally important as the ability to detect a looming substance abuse problem is the opportunity for intervention or referral to professionals who can provide assistance to overcome the addiction, dependence or abuse. Here are six professionals who can help identify a drug problem.
Now that you have completed rehab and you’re living as a recovering addict, you may begin to think about relationships. Your therapist may suggest that you hold off on romantic relationships until you feel more secure in your sobriety, but once you’re ready and you’ve met someone you really like, you could probably use some advice. As an addict, you likely did not contribute to relationships that were very healthy. If you want to have a successful and satisfying relationship now, here are some steps to take to build it: Continue reading
Teens have always been experimenters and risk takers. It’s a part of growing up. But when it involves drugs, the risks can have serious consequences. From poor grades to legal troubles and even death, teen drug abuse can have a number of detrimental impacts on an individual’s life. If you are the parent of a teen, be aware of the facts about teen drug use, how harmful these bad choices can be and how to prevent them.
The federal government is interested in pot; perhaps even more so since the drug has been made legal for recreational use in two states. To determine how potent pot is, the government uses scientific study to gauge the level of THC (the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana) in the drug being used by street-level consumers. Some of that research is performed through a potency monitoring procedure at the University of Mississippi. According to their studies, between 1993 and 2012 the average THC content in marijuana went from 3.4 to 12.3 percent.
Illegal drug use in Salt Lake City represents a significant challenge to the city’s policymakers, who are forced to confront the problem as both a public health issue and a criminal threat. The use and abuse of illicit drugs can spiral into addiction, which can in turn lead to chronic physical illness, overdose and death. Drug abuse is also closely connected to increased incidence of violent crime, child abuse, sexual assault, HIV infection and automobile accidents. Continue reading
Heroin use in Utah is climbing, particularly among addicts switching to the illicit drug from less available, more expensive prescription opiates such as OxyContin. Since 2003, Utah has ranked among other states with the highest rates of nonmedical use of prescription painkillers. According to state officials, heroin is a cheap and readily available alternative. Continue reading
Driving under the influence (DUI) of either drugs or alcohol opens you, your passengers and other people on the road to the risk of crashes, injuries and fatalities. In Utah, DUIs account for approximately 9 percent of all crash fatalities, and reducing the number of accidents caused by impaired driving is a huge priority for lawmakers. Finding out the statistics for DUIs in Utah, the laws governing driving under the influence of alcohol, and how many people are injured or killed as a result each year illustrates the severity of the consequences of drunk driving. Continue reading
Drug abuse is a problem spanning the entire U.S., whether using legal substances such as alcohol and prescription medications or illicit drugs such as heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine. The drug abuse stats for Utah provide insight into the prevalence of substance abuse, the proportion of those using substances who receive treatment, and the overdose death rate in the state. The 2013 Behavioral Health Barometer for Utah (from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) provides detailed information about many important health issues, including substance abuse in Utah. Continue reading