Drug Addiction in Ohio

Addiction. A serious problem that has taken over Ohio. Addiction has became a part of some people’s everyday lives. Destroying homes, taking away bright futures, and tearing families apart. Addiction needs to be stopped.

Heroin is sometimes mixed with fentanyl, a synthetic and short-acting opioid analgesic that is 30-50 times more potent than morphine. This mix can be lethal. So using drugs is really a gamble with your life each time.

Overdoses have increased dramatically since 1999 to 2017 with opioids being one of the main causes of overdoses.

drugs involved

 Graph Source:  CDC Wonder                      

“There are several factors that contribute to the start of addiction,” said Valerie Conatser, a local Drug Clinician. “Drug addiction can be caused by mental illness, abuse of medication, and many other things. Drug addiction doesn’t just have one cause,” Conatser said. She also said, “Drug addiction can have many long term effects even after the addiction is under control. You lose brain cells, which causes you to not be able to process information as quickly as you would regularly be able to.”

Drug addiction is a disease. It reroutes the brain’s ability to think making the drug feel like a need when it is really just a want.

“Drug addiction is a struggle, even if you’re a clean addict. Every day is a war and you take it one day at a time,” Joe, a recovering addict whose name has been changed to protect his identity, said. “Drugs will take everything you love away from you until you realize and accept that you need help,” Joe said. “ It took me longer than most to realize, but when I hit rock bottom and accepted help I went nowhere but up and now my life’s better than I could have ever imagined it being.”  

The life of a drug addict is never easy but being sober can work wonders.

Joe’s girlfriend said, “ Drugs took away everything, even my ability to think straight and it wasn’t until I had four, felony five drug charges I realized I needed to change.” She also said, “after recovering I had a son, and he will be two months old.” She is living her best life as a recovering addict.

When addicts do decide to receive treatment one of the first things they are told when they get to rehab is that they will always be considered an addict, it’s just how they deal with their addiction that determines how successful they are. Joe still considers himself an addict even after almost a year of being clean. He said, “I’ll always be an addict, but I’ll take it one day at a time to make sure I’m never a using addict again.”

Addiction. A serious problem that has taken over Ohio. Something that can be overcome with the right help and with courage and determination.