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Tennessee Opioid Epidemic

Experience clinician-run addiction treatment at Red Oak Recovery® in the pristine Blue Ridge Mountains

Tennessee Opioid Epidemic

Opioid overdose numbers in Tennessee can be shocking. The number of people who engage in drug abuse and suffer a drug overdose has come down somewhat in the last few years, but far too many people are still dying from a preventative tragedy. Knowing these numbers helps to understand the epidemic that’s occurring. Knowing treatment is available at Red Oak Recovery® in nearby North Carolina is even more important for those with an addiction. Contact our men’s addiction treatment center today at 866.457.7590 to learn more about our programs.

What Are the Opioid Overdose Numbers in Tennessee?

The National Institute on Drug Abuse offers some clarity on the opioid epidemic that many states are experiencing. In the United States as a whole, there were 67,367 drug overdoses in 2018. Of these, opioids played a role in 46,802 of them. That’s more than 70 percent.

In Tennessee, 1307 people died in 2018 as a result of an opioid overdose. The number of heroin-involved deaths included 369 people. Prescription opioids accounted for 739 of them.

To better understand the opioid overdose figures, consider the number of prescriptions written for opioids. In 2018, there were 81.8 prescriptions written for every 100 people in the state. Across the U.S., that was the third-highest rate of prescribing these drugs.

How Does This Type of Drug Overdose Occur?

An opioid overdose occurs when the body cannot manage the levels of opioids ingested in one sitting. These drugs interact with the central nervous system. This system controls breathing and heart rate. When the drugs are present, there is a drop in the brain and central nervous system’s function, leading to a slowed heart rate and breathing rate. This drop leads to a lack of oxygen getting to all organs of the brain. A person often slips into a coma or stops breathing. This condition is a life-threatening event that requires immediate medical support.

The key to remember about opioid abuse is the habit-forming potential for them. These drugs trigger the pleasure center of the brain. This trigger leads to a craving to continue to use them over and over again. A person soon becomes dependent, in which the body relies on the drugs to function normally. When that does not happen, withdrawal symptoms occur. Those symptoms may include:

  • Intense agitation
  • Muscle and bone pain
  • Headaches
  • Frustration and anxiety
  • Irritability
  • Trouble sleeping

Dependence symptoms indicate more than drug abuse is occurring. More commonly, this is when addiction and dependence are present. As a result of this, a person who wishes to stop using these drugs cannot do so without professional support and treatment.

How Can a Person Get Help After an Opioid Overdose?

For those using opioids, it may be impossible to stop doing so alone. Medications are used at professional treatment centers to ease the cravings and trick the brain into believing the drugs are present. Over time, this allows for a person to stop using opioids safely.

While the treatment of opioid drug abuse with medications is one step, there is also the need to use talk therapy. Treatment like this is most effective at helping a person through the underlying cause of their addiction. At Red Oak Recovery®, we offer a range of therapies to allow this. Each of our treatment programs below can help with opioid addiction:

Treatment Is a Call Away at Red Oak Recovery®

In Tennessee, drug overdose and general drug abuse rates continue to be staggering. Opioid overdose can be very worrisome, especially if you have a loved one using drugs or alcohol. Our team at Red Oak Recovery® wants to ensure you have access to the treatment you need to overcome addiction. To learn more about how we can help you or your loved one, call 866.457.7590 or reach out to us online.