It would be hard these days to find someone who hasn’t heard about the opioid epidemic. In the past three years, there have been numerous stories daily on the news. This is a huge win for activists who have been warning about the problem for years. Are we missing something though? Is too much time being spent solely on the opioid problem? Is there a bigger issue at hand, an addiction epidemic?
Are We Missing Something
If you look a little deeper than the opioid epidemic you will find that opioids aren’t our only problem when it comes to drugs in this country. Obviously, we all know that other drugs are being abused but to what degree? In the UK they are in the midst of a “fake Xanax” epidemic in their youth and those same drugs are in the United States and Canada. Xanax has been said to be tougher than heroin to come off of and just as dangerous. Xanax is scary when the actual drug is being taken but when you throw bathroom pharmacists into the mix it becomes terrifying.
These hometown chemists are putting double the amount of the drug that is in Xanax, Alprosam, in these fake pills as well as the deadly drug that is hammering the opioid users, Fentanyl. The pills look so much like the real pills that experts cannot tell the difference without running tests on the pills to see what it is made of. That means teens or even adult users don’t have a chance at spotting the bad pills.
What Is Xanax
Xanax is prescribed for anxiety and is twice as strong as its counterpart Valium. Short term the drug helps ease feelings of anxiety but after extended use, it has the opposite effect. The withdrawal is longer and more painful mentally than heroin. After months without the drug, many people report continued withdrawal and terrible anxiety. Some doctors say long-term use of Xanax can cause long-term mental illness, a type of amnesia and terrible mood swings.
The Real Epidemic
The truth is we are in the midst of an addiction epidemic. If there were no addicts there would be no overdose deaths. Maybe we should be reporting on all kinds of addiction so we can address the whole problem. The opioid epidemic is scary no doubt but the real issues that cause opioid addiction can cause any type of addiction. Let’s work on the causes of addiction and then we will be addressing the entire problem.
It doesn’t matter if you lose your loved one to a heroin overdose or any other addiction-related death. They are all unnecessary and we need to make some big moves to make a difference.