The Rise of Fentanyl
With news stories regarding overdoses being churned out at seemingly every corner as the opioid epidemic continues to sweep the country, there is one word that has become as constant as anything else I’ve seen in these heartbreaking stories: fentanyl. It is a powerful and synthetic opioid that is cheaper for both distribution and consumption and through its use, opioid addicts all over the country have found themselves with a new addiction. The problem with this addiction is that it appears to be more dangerous and deadly than anything that has come before it. One of the things that makes this drug so dangerous is that people often take it without actually knowing they are taking it.
If it were only heroin being laced with fentanyl and its insidious ability to take a life, that itself would be a huge perobem, but, worse still, it has made its way down the line of street drugs where anything now has the potential to be laced with fentanyl and cause an overdose to an unsuspecting user. It’s dangerous enough for the opioid addict with a high tolerance to opiates, where it’s used as filler in heroin as well as ’fake’ pain killers sold off as oxycodone. But now we are seeing it laced to give cocaine and meth an added boost on the cheap and often taken by addicts with zero tolerance to opiates. The most common overdoses occur when a person either relapses with a low tolerance or when a person accidentally takes one drug when they thought they were taking something else.
That’s not to say a person with a high opioid tolerance can safely use fentanyl—quite the contrary. The nature of the drug’s concentration makes dosages extremely unpredictable and in turn very dangerous. But when added to the mix for the cocaine or meth addict with no tolerance to opiates you get a loud knock on death’s door. The harsh reality with fentanyl is that no addict using street drugs in 2019 is safe from its wrath. It is the world we live in and until something is done about it an addict is playing Russian roulette every time he or she uses. That may sound like hyperbole, but all one must do is a daily google search on fentanyl overdoses to see this is no exaggeration and people are dying from this drug by the thousands.
Considering there is no way to do any kind of drug without the possibility of it being laced with a drug with the power of fentanyl, there could be no better time than now for an addict to get help—and get it quickly. Sometimes the worst things that happen to us are wake-up calls to make long-overdue changes. Make no mistake, fentanyl is becoming that horrible wake-up call for addicts and families of addicts all over the country, as well as for our society. The threat is immediate and real and should be taken as a life-or-death situation for anyone struggling with addiction or a loved one’s addiction because that’s exactly what it is.
Our wake-up call has arrived, and if you are reading this it doesn’t have to come too late. There is no time like the present to remove yourself from the ever-increasing dangers of addiction. Help is out there, and no one wants to see themselves or a loved one as part of one of these news stories.
If you or anyone you know is seeking help, please reach out.