Legal Law

Rise in prescription drug addiction and drug deaths among suburban teens

Thousands of families move to the suburbs each year because they believe it will be safer for their children, but parents are learning too late these days that the suburbs cannot protect their children from addiction to prescription drugs and, what it is more tragic, of death by prescription drugs. overdose

Even scarier than the epidemic of prescription drug addiction is the rising number of deaths from heroin addiction and overdose among suburban teens and young adults, and the crime that often follows drug addiction. The desperate need for cash to obtain heroin or other narcotics leads from petty theft to major crimes, prison, and ruined young lives.

For example, in picturesque North Haven, Connecticut, where you would least expect to find prescription drug addiction problems, 14 youths were recently arrested after a two-year crime wave that involved a dozen burglaries at homes and businesses, and more. of 40 carjackings, dating back to early 2006, just to fuel illicit addictions to prescription and street drugs.

Five years ago, the annual report from the National Drug Intelligence Center (NDIC) said heroin was just beginning to reach the suburbs, but found that the drug’s popularity was either flat or declining. But in 2008, the NDIC’s National Drug Threat Assessment warned that heroin abuse “is increasing among young adults in many suburban and rural areas.”

Children begin to experiment with brand name narcotic pain relievers such as OxyContin, Vicodin, Percocet, or Lortab, or generic narcotics such as hydrocodone or methadone. If these highly addictive and dangerous narcotics don’t kill them first, many children quickly become victims of prescription drug addiction. And parents are often the last to know, usually from a call from the hospital emergency room, or from the police who have their child in custody, or worse, in the morgue.

In Massachusetts, for example, opioid-related deaths among children ages 13 and younger were five times higher in 2006 than in 1997. And according to federal and state drug intelligence, law enforcement, and treatment officials, the trend It shows no signs of slowing down.

Getting prescription drugs on an ongoing basis is a problem for kids, which is also a great motivator to try the cheapest and most readily available street heroin. Most teens steal pills from parents and family members who have legitimate prescriptions and share them with friends or sell them at school. When those are not available, the children look to the streets. And that’s where they find low-level heroin dealers moving in from the inner cities, who find in the suburbs a lucrative, easily monopolized market, brimming with new customers with money in their pockets.

According to Allison Stombaugh, an NDIC intelligence analyst, “Prescription opioids are considered acceptable because they are prescribed by a doctor. But abusing them to get high often leads users to try heroin.” The 2009 CDIC report will cover the growing threat of prescription opioids because they cause much addiction to prescription drugs among children, but are the main gateway to the cheaper, highly refined heroin now flooding suburban streets.

Teens lucky enough to get help for narcotic addiction need the same type of treatment that any inner-city drug addict needs. Narcotic addiction is the same no matter where you are addicted. And withdrawing from narcotics is the first step in rehabilitation.

A medical drug detox program, the kind that offers 24/7 medical supervision and tailored to a patient’s unique DNA and metabolic requirements, offers by far the safest abstinence of drugs or alcohol. And while teen-friendly clinics aren’t as widely available as adult centers, they do exist. If your teen or the child of someone you know is ready to handle an addiction to street drugs or prescription drugs, call a medical drug detox center and get all your questions answered by a medical specialist. drug detox professional

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