70 percent of fatal overdoses in the United States in 2016 that had fentanyl or heroin also involved other drugs. When it came to cocaine, about 74 percent involved other drugs along with the cocaine. Most fatal overdoses happen when more or one drug is in the system. This happens a lot because drugs are cut with other drugs by dealers trying to save a buck.
The idea of an opioid epidemic makes it sound like those drugs are the biggest issue. That’s not necessarily the case. It is often the combination of multiple medications, involving opiates, that lead to fatal overdoses.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced that more than 72,000 people died as a result of overdosing on drugs in 2017.
The opioid epidemic is in full swing. Drugs like fentanyl and heroin can be dangerous in even small quantities. People don’t always know what they’re taking either, and that can have strong and adverse effects on their bodies.
Prescription opioids also cause problems as well. They are over prescribed and not well monitored. People don’t understand they can cause addiction. They also may think they are safe when they are anything but and accidentally become addicted.
All the news reports and analysis in recent years point to the same thing. That overdoses have increased, and that is due mostly to multiple drugs being in the user’s systems at once.
Trying to figure out what specific cocktail of drugs is responsible isn’t really possible though. You can narrow it down to ones most common, but because there are so many drugs and so many ways to combine and abuse it’s not easy to define.
Regardless, we shouldn’t just be afraid of opioids. We should make sure people know that mixing alcohol with drugs, or drugs with other drugs, is never alright.
Paying attention to studies and making sure information is up to date is the best way to combat the increase in overdoses. The information is vital to those who want to help.