Opioid Overdose Death Toll Possibly Underestimated by 70,000
With news highlighting the current Opioid Epidemic in the nation and President Trump having classified opioid addiction as a “public health issue,” it is clear that the opioid overdose death toll has been extreme. However, it may be even more extreme than our society may have thought – if that’s even possible, considering just how horrific of a crisis our nation is in with this deadly Opioid Epidemic.
Opioid Overdose Death Toll Might Be Off
The amount of opioid overdose deaths since 1999 might have been underestimated. According to NBC News, a total of no more than 70,000 people were not added to the death toll but may have died from an opioid overdose. This approximate total of 70,000 people who are believed to have died from an opioid overdose may have not been included in the opioid death toll originally because drug overdose deaths are not always specified as an opioid overdose and may have instead been more broadly listed as drug intoxication and/or overdose.
“Potentially 70,000 opioid-related, unintentional overdose deaths from 1999 through 2015 have been missed because of incomplete reporting,“ researchers wrote in the journal Public Health Reports. It was also mentioned, “The Opioid Overdose Epidemic may be worse than it appears.”
It is critical to get accurate rates of drug overdoses, including opioid overdoses and opioid overdose deaths, because these facts help indicate just how affected the nation is by these substances. The researchers went on to add, “Our analysis [on the opioid overdose death toll being underestimated] emphasizes the importance of reporting complete drug information on overdose deaths.”
Understanding Opioid Addiction
The reality is that opioid addiction has affected millions of people in the United States. Opioid addiction can lead to opioid overdoses and even death. Addiction is a disease, and it should not be left untreated otherwise it will progress with potentially fatal consequences. Opioids are physically and mentally addicting drugs that can impair a user’s judgment and thinking. An opioid addiction is extremely dangerous because the brain’s reward system gets disrupted and the body can become so physically dependent on the drug to the point where without the drug, the user will go into a severe physical withdrawal.
Treatment for Opioid Addiction
There is no cure for addiction, but there is treatment. Opioid addiction treatment should begin with a medical detox and inpatient drug rehab. An opioid addict should go to a medical detox and inpatient rehab facility because medical professionals can help them safely wean off all substances and then trained addiction professionals can provide essential treatment for underlying issues that may have caused them to begin using substances in the first place. Without inpatient treatment for opioid addiction, the likelihood of recovery is slim. An inpatient rehab is effective for opioid addiction because it allows for opioid addicts to be treated in a safe environment and develop critical tools that can help them maintain their sobriety long-term.
If you are struggling with an opioid addiction, there is hope. You do not have to continue to live in active addiction. The Watershed Addiction Treatment Programs is dedicated to restoring the lives of both addicts and alcoholics. With a full continuum of care, The Watershed provides treatment, beginning with a medical detox and inpatient rehab, to help recovering addicts every step of the way. Call The Watershed for help today at 1-800-861-1768.Tags: heroin epidemic, opioid addiction, opioid overdose death, opioids, overdose deaths