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Sober Nation

Putting Recovery On The Map

01-03-17 | By

4 Ways to Help Fight the Heroin Epidemic

ways to fight the heroin epidemic

In recent years, heroin has become one of the world’s most deadly illegal drugs. There has been a rapid rise in the number of heroin-related overdoses. Thousands of people are losing their lives each year due to using this drug.

Law enforcement is doing a great job fighting back, but it has become an epidemic that is so large, it is almost impossible for them to keep up. They have worked to stop drug traffickers from bringing the drug into the country, but this has only been able to reduce the flow. Heroin is still getting in. There is also a focus on locking up dealers to get the drug off the street. With such an epidemic, though, it is impossible to stop every trafficker and every dealer.

Plus, there are only so many officers available. They can’t be everywhere at one time. They can’t see everything that is happening. Despite how hard law enforcement works, they simply cannot do it alone. That is why the public has to get involved. You may not feel like you can do anything to help fight the heroin epidemic, but you are wrong. There are some things you can do.

Know the Signs of Use

The first thing you should do is become more familiar with the drug and how it affects people. Heroin is related to morphine. It produces a feel good effect. It also makes users feel really relaxed. Many times people start using heroin after becoming addicted to pain medications. Heroin is cheaper and easier to get because pain pills are only available through a prescription and are highly regulated. Plus, it produces the same effects as these pills.

There are many ways you can tell if someone is using heroin. One way to do that is to look for paraphernalia. You might find spoons that have been burnt, tiny baggies and tan or white residue. Residue found may also be dark in color. You may also find glass pipes, syringes, and rubber tubing.
It also helps to monitor the person and how they are acting. They may have pupils that are small or look tired all the time. They may even fall asleep at random times. Breathing and other functions may be slow, their nose may run, and they may look flushed. You may notice someone starts wearing long sleeves all the time or just stops grooming altogether. They may have slurred speech and stop eating. In addition, they may scratch all the time all over their body.

Support Local Law Enforcement

It is also important that you do everything you can to support your local law enforcement. You should report anything you know so they can take action to remove dealers from your community. Most agencies have anonymous tip lines that allow you to call in leads without having to worry about anyone finding out. You should also respect law enforcement and show your support for them to help them to keep fighting against this drug.

Be an Advocate

There is no one solution to solving the heroin epidemic, and chances are that you won’t be able to solve it yourself, but you can act as an advocate for those who are caught within its grip. By helping to find ways to help those addicted to heroin, you can help save lives right now.

There are many ways communities are trying to help people addicted to this drug. Clinics that offer medications, like methadone, are available to help people avoid using street heroin. Methadone can help to prevent withdraw symptoms. These clinics have shown to be helpful in preventing overdoses, but they are not widely available. You could try to get a clinic in your area.

Another type of drug is becoming very popular in the fight against heroin. It’s called naloxone. It can stop the effects of an overdose and save a life. Many medical facilities have it on hand to treat overdoses. The best way you can help is to spread the word that people must call for emergency help if someone they know overdoses. Time is of the essence in an overdose situation.

You can also join local organizations that are working to help heroin addicts. You may find religious or community organizations. By becoming part of these groups, you can do your part to help stop the use of the drug.

Encourage Those Addicted to Seek Help

No matter what else you do, you should always work towards helping those you know get off the drug. Always be encouraging them to quit using. Offer them help to get treatment or at least point them in the right direction, like to a treatment center like Newport Academy. The only way to stop this drug is to help those who are currently using to quit.

Fighting heroin requires everyone’s help. Law enforcement can’t do it on their own, and those addicted certainly can’t stop on their own. The best way to help end this epidemic is to encourage those addicted to get help as soon as possible.

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