When you take the time to look over recent drug overdose statistics, all one can say is that the data is startling. The United States National Center for Health Statistics reports that deaths that may involve drug overdoses accounted for over 31,000 deaths within the United States in 2006 alone. Up to 5,000 of these deaths may have been intentional. It is a truly staggering statistic to consider. But, that is not the only thing that is staggering about this situation.
According to a testimony given by doctors at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the numbers are growing rapidly. There is now an increasing amount of evidence that suggests to researchers that this growth may be thanks to an explosion in prescription drug use within the last decade. There are almost no signs that cases of drug overdoses will be going down anytime soon. The fact that people are out of work due to difficult economic times doesn’t help.
The most common drugs that account for overdoses, intentional and unintentional, are barbiturates such as pentobarbital which has been used in assisted suicides, opioids like heroine and codeine, and alcohol abuse. In fact, many people do not realize the large amount of deaths that result from acute alcohol intoxication, which is extreme drunkenness. Acute alcohol intoxication may result in liver failure and can be avoided by carefully examining and limiting your alcohol intake.
A look at drug overdose statistics can make us discouraged but it is each individual’s relation to stress that can be the key to the solution. If you use any prescription drugs yourself, there are steps that you should take to avoid an accidental overdose such as refraining from mixing prescriptions. If you use drugs or alcohol recreationally, examine what leads up to the need to find ways to escape your stress. Learn ways to dissipate the low moods through walking, exercise and ways to produce a natural state of peace. Find someone to talk to or a support group to help change your perspective when things seem dark. Following these few important steps and learning tools for coping will help you avoid becoming a drug overdose statistic yourself.