Wisconsin recently released a public health advisory regarding fentanyl deaths in the state. Yet, overdose deaths continue to rise, with seemingly no end. Why is this happening? What can be done to help this epidemic?
Over the last year, synthetic opioids (primarily fentanyl) were identified in 91% of opioid overdose deaths and 73% of all drug overdose deaths. The number of fentanyl deaths in Wisconsin rose 97% from 2019 to 2021. These deaths continue to increase as the year 2022 goes on. Fentanyl does not only affect opioids. Cocaine and other drugs are often mixed with fentanyl, causing even more deaths. Wisconsin’s substance abuse problem continues to grow, but there are ways citizens can help.
What Can Be Done?
– Parents, inform your children of the dangers of drug use.
– Keep your home substance free.
– If someone you know is using illegal substances, keep NARCAN on hand and learn how to use it in an emergency.
– Learn the signs of opioid overdose so you can help in an emergency.
– Learn about illegal substances yourself to inform others why they need to stay away from them.
– Make sure people feel like they can talk to you if they struggle with substance abuse.
– Visit Dose of Reality to learn about fentanyl, fentanyl test strips, and how you can protect yourself and your loved ones from an overdose.
– Before using a substance, test it with fentanyl test strips. They are accessible at some pharmacies, syringe service providers, and opioid treatment centers.
If you or a loved one struggles with substance abuse, you must be more careful now than ever. Even the slightest trace of fentanyl can kill you, and those who survive run the risk of their addiction landing them behind bars. When faced with drug charges, it is crucial to have an experienced criminal defense attorney who can provide you with compassionate counsel and fierce advocacy in Wisconsin criminal courts.