Elizabeth, New Jersey, is the fourth-largest in the state, and it’s located in the northeast in Union County. Founded in the mid-1600s, it has been a crucial portion of the state’s economy. The region is home to manufacturing and industrial jobs today and is a short 12-mile drive from New York City. Unfortunately, due to its proximity from one of the world’s busiest ports, it has struggled with the influx of opioid addiction that has decimated the area. Despite the city’s best attempts, overcoming such devastation has been a challenge.
While Elizabeth, NJ, works on treating the opioid-addicted in its region, the rest of the United States is currently battling the war of a lifetime. The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) estimates that 128 people lose their lives every day due to opioid overdoses, which is a number comparable to war casualties throughout our history. Misuse of prescription painkillers, heroin, and fentanyl has destroyed local and national economies and has cost taxpayers an estimated $78.5 billion in damages.
The numbers go even further and highlight the sheer volume of those trying opioids. An estimated 21 to 29 percent of chronic pain patients that are dispensed painkillers will eventually misuse them. Another eight to 12 percent will develop an opioid use disorder, and four to six percent of chronic pain patients that abuse their medication will develop a heroin addiction. An estimated 80 percent of heroin users started by abusing prescription opioids.
While opioid addiction has adverse effects on its user, it causes ripple effects through families and communities. Those seeking opioid treatment in Elizabeth, NJ, must understand that help is required to overcome such a severe issue. While opioid use disorders don’t always end in fatalities, the numbers above paint a grim picture of the long-term in someone who abuses them. It’s necessary to reach out for support.
If you’ve lost your friends and family because of drug abuse and are ready to seek opioid treatment in Elizabeth, NJ, you should continue reading to learn how your community has been affected. You have the power to overcome this with help.
How Opioid Addiction is Affecting Elizabeth, NJ
Elizabeth, NJ, has not been exempt from the ripple effect through the United States caused by opioids. Union County, home to Elizabeth, reported 147 suspected drug overdose deaths in 2019, which ended up in 3,021 deaths statewide. The city has been hit hard, but leaders have heard the outcry from residents and worked toward creating a safer environment.
New Jersey has suffered devastating effects due to the opioid epidemic, but it’s taken the approach of tackling these issues head-on. A town hall hosted by The Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey aimed to educate the public about the dangers of prescription opioids and how to use them responsibly so that it doesn’t turn into an opioid use disorder.
Elizabeth, NJ Substance Abuse Statistics
In Union County, the substance use statistics speak for themself. As we mentioned above, there were 147 suspected drug overdoses in 2019, 851 individuals treated with naloxone administrations, and 187,039 opioid prescriptions dispensed among the community. In 2020, the state of New Jersey reported that 1,595 overdose deaths occurred between January 1st and June 30th.
An estimated 1,789,327 opioid prescriptions have been distributed throughout the state as well. In 2020 in Union, 80,925 prescriptions have been given to the community, 75 suspected overdoses have taken place, and there have been 359 doses of naloxone administered.
Elizabeth, NJ Opioid Withdrawal and Treatment
Perhaps you’ve gone through opioid withdrawal before, and you know what to expect, while for others, it may be your first time. In some cases, your primary care physician determined opioids aren’t an adequate treatment choice anymore, while others are looking to kick illicit opioids. No matter your path, you should know that opioid withdrawal isn’t deadly, but that doesn’t mean you should take it lightly. Our bodies all possess unique chemistry, and each case will cause individual symptoms. Symptoms that will be universal, however, include what you might expect from the flu. These intense symptoms will drain you, mentally and physically.
Unfortunately, the most dangerous part of withdrawal is relapsing, which can be deadly if the former user starts using the same dose. Your tolerance starts to lessen in just a few days, and this can have catastrophic consequences. Those who continue forward will experience symptoms like low-grade fever, nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, sweating, and dehydration. You must enter medical detox to ensure you’re safe and can be provided necessary medications for your comfort.
Once you successfully complete a detox program, you will enter opioid treatment in Elizabeth, NJ. During your stay, clinicians will make sure that the process is tailored to your specific needs. Depending on the severity of your addiction, you can expect either residential or outpatient treatment tending to your needs.