What is the Opioid Epidemic?

What is the Opioid Epidemic?

The opioid epidemic refers to the widespread use and abuse of opioid drugs, both prescription and illicit, that has led to an alarming increase in overdose deaths and addiction in the United States and other countries. Opioids are a class of drugs that include prescription pain relievers like oxycodone, hydrocodone, and fentanyl, as well as illegal drugs like heroin.

The opioid epidemic began in the 1990s when pharmaceutical companies aggressively marketed prescription opioids as safe and effective pain relievers. This led to a significant increase in the number of opioid prescriptions, which in turn contributed to a rise in opioid addiction and overdose deaths.

Since then, the opioid epidemic has only grown worse, with millions of people addicted to opioids and tens of thousands of deaths each year. Many people who become addicted to prescription opioids eventually turn to illegal drugs like heroin, which is cheaper and easier to obtain. The opioid epidemic has had devastating consequences for individuals, families, and communities, and has sparked a public health crisis that continues to this day.

Shervan K Shahhian

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