The state of New Hampshire is suffering from drug addiction. The Granite State officially sees more deaths from drug abuse and overdose than from traffic accidents, according to statistics released in 2015. Although synthetic opioids like Fentanyl are attributable for about 45% of those deaths, the problem of drug overdose in New Hampshire knows neither age nor class. Half of all deaths were people over 40 years old. Tym Rourke, Chairman of the Governor's Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention, Treatment and Recovery, said, "This is a crisis that is happening across the lifespan." In relation to youth, young adults and older adults, he continued, "It's happening across all those generations." Rourke attested that his state should expect more than 1,000 drug overdose deaths per year, if immediate action is not taken to restrict drug availability and help those needing treatment. The Chairman is calling for additional resources, political strength and multi-agency action to combat this growing health crisis. "If we don't act, two years from now we will be sitting in this room not talking about 321 people; we will be talking about 600, 800, 1,000 people," Chairman Rourke explained. Even more shocking and terrifying is that New Hampshire first responders saved 3,275 lives in 2014 using an overdose reversal drug called Narcan, according to Executive Director Linda Saunders Paquette of drug advocacy organization New Futures.
Some of the problems leading to such a high number of overdoses in the Granite State are those seen in any US state. However, Rourke claims that his state's residents struggle to get treatment when they have the clarity to seek help. "The wait to get into residential treatment can range from six weeks to six months," Rourke said. He relates this part of the crisis as being similar to telling someone with metastatic cancer that they cannot gain treatment for six months. Sadly, death statistics of this one state are indicating drug use there is becoming as fatal as insidious cancer.
As Tym Rourke stated about addiction, "This is an illness where if you don't intervene when the person is ready, it will get worse." Addiction does not get better on its own and requires a quality treatment program, a solid support system for the addict, and an ongoing focus on sobriety. Addicts can always seek treatment on their own. But loved ones are excellent advocates in helping individuals wanting to gain their own freedom from addiction. Whether you are the addict or you have a loved one in the throes of substance abuse, action is the key to a bright future. While ultimate sobriety is on the shoulders of the individual, people supportive of their loved one's potential for recovery are key in helping him or her take that first step. When you need help with addiction, Freedom From Addiction is there for you.
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