Caught In The Crosshairs of Opioid Addiction
“The public and the media tend to think of our opioid addiction epidemic as having a greater impact on teens. But the reality is that older Americans, 20-year-olds to 80-year-olds, have been hit much harder,” said Dr. Andrew Kolodny, executive director of Physicians for Responsible Opioid Prescribing and co-director of opioid policy research at Brandeis University.
Those at the greatest risk of opioid addiction and overdose death are not teenagers. But, that does not mean that young people are being spared. The National Center for Health Statistics found that teen drug overdose deaths rose 19% from 2014 to 2015. These were American teenagers between the age of 15 and 19. The death rate in 2015 was commonly linked to heroin.
The findings are a sign that young people are experimenting with this dangerous family of drugs. Highlighting the continued need to step up prevention methods. Educating parents about the dangers of not keeping opioids in the house locked up. A significant percentage of opioid initiation involves diverted medication from friend or family members.