Drug And Alcohol Addiction In Hartford, Connecticut
Hartford, Connecticut, the capital of the state, is nestled within Hartford County and is home to a population of about 121,203 people. Increasing substance use disorders have caused Heroin and Fentanyl overdoses to claim many residents of the state. In 2017, Connecticut ranked 7 of 10 in a comparative analysis of states with the worst drug problems. Narcan, a medication used to block the effects of Opioids, was used 4,000 times throughout all of Connecticut the same year; 723 people died statewide due to Opioids and other illicit drugs.
While there are limited treatment facilities in the immediate area, there are many in surrounding regions that specialize in various forms of addiction and abuse rehab and recovery services.
Opioid Use And Abuse In Hartford
Like many other states, Connecticut is caught in the midst of the Opioid epidemic. While there are increasingly more preventative measures like the Statewide Opioid Reporting Directive (SWORD), in 2019, 152 Opioid-induced overdoses in Hartford County were called into Poison Control, the highest number of all Connecticut counties. With SWORD in place, EMT responders call the state’s Poison Control Center and through a series of questions, officials are able to more easily track and record overdoses in the community. Still, Opioid abuse numbers increase daily. Recently, police made 2 arrests in Hartford, seizing over 10,000 bags of Heroin.
Medical professionals are not exempt from Opioid abuse. A recent news story revealed that 18 local nurses lost their license due to prescription Opioid abuse. A highly stressful livelihood, some nurses turned to Opioids like Morphine and Oxycodone, stealing them from patients or else abusing personally prescribed medications. As a result, their dependency on Opioids has led them to prison time.
Signs Of Opioid Abuse
Opioids are claiming the lives of thousands of people each year. While overdoses are not uncommon, some individuals struggling with drugs such as Heroin may appear functional and maintain a steady job and family life. Because it is often tricky to catch in high-functioning addicted individuals, it is important to recognize the signs of an Opioid use disorder. While this list is not exclusionary or exhaustive, Mayo Clinic lists the following as potential signs of an Opioid addiction:
- Regularly taking an Opioid in a way not intended by the doctor who prescribed it, including taking more than the prescribed dose or taking the drug for the way it makes a person feel
- Taking Opioids “just in case,” even when not in pain
- Mood changes, including excessive swings from elation to hostility
- Changes in sleep patterns
- Borrowing medication from other people or “losing” medications so that more prescriptions must be written
- Seeking the same prescription from multiple doctors, in order to have a “backup” supply
- Poor decision-making, including putting him/her/themself and others in danger
The longer someone may be exposed to Opioids without getting treatment, they are at risk for developing more severe health conditions. With prolonged Opioid use, there is an increase in the tolerance for the drug and its analogs and people will begin craving it, resulting in addiction. Individuals grappling with an Opioid use disorder are also more at risk of experiencing a fatal overdose. Opioid overdose symptoms range from dry mouth and bluish lips to tongue discoloration and shallow breathing.
Break free from addiction.
You have options. Talk about them with a treatment provider today.
There Is Hope For Hartford
Successfully battling a drug addiction is a challenging process and should be done with medical professionals and peer support available. Quitting cold turkey is not recommended. The lack of medical supervision can create distressing symptoms require support to reduce relapse. Treatment facilities offer the knowledge of staff and variety of treatments to help eliminate cravings. Future patients can use counseling to eliminate underlying emotional and mental conditions fueling addiction. They can benefit from wellness tools to live a life of health and sobriety. Help for you, a family member or a friend is available. Contact a treatment provider today.
Jeffrey Juergens earned his Bachelor’s and Juris Doctor from the University of Florida. Jeffrey’s desire to help others led him to focus on economic and social development and policy making. After graduation, he decided to pursue his passion of writing and editing. Jeffrey’s mission is to educate and inform the public on addiction issues and help those in need of treatment find the best option for them.
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- Polansky, Rob. (2017). Connecticut among the states with the biggest drug problems. Retrieved on July 1, 2019 from https://www.wfsb.com/news/connecticut-among-the-states-with-the-biggest-drug-problems/article_a38816ca-f6f4-553f-aa04-44f6df0520a7.html
- Hamm, Nia. (2018). Health Officials: Opioid Epidmic Could Be Worse Than What State Reporting Shows. Retrieved on September 11, 2018 at https://fox61.com/2018/04/17/health-officials-opioid-epidemic-could-be-worse-than-what-state-reporting-shows/
- Altimari, Dave, (2015). Heroin-Related Overdose Deaths Soar In Connecticut. Retrieved on September 11, 2018 at http://www.courant.com/news/connecticut/hc-2015-heroin-deaths-increase-20160214-story.html
- Rittmon-Delphin, Miriam. (2017). DMHAS Annual Report Shows Heroin As Most Frequent Drug Reported In Admission For Substance Abuse Treatment. Retrieved on September 11, 2018 at https://www.ct.gov/dmhas/cwp/view.asp?a=2911&q=589052
- Farrish, Kate. (2018). Drug Abuse Top Cause of Nurse Discipline In Connecticut. Retrieved on September 11, 2018 at http://www.courant.com/news/connecticut/hc-nurses-substance-abuse-suspensions-20180123-story.html
- Polansky, Rob. (2018). 10,000 Bags Of Heroin Seized During Drug Bust In Hartford. Retrieved on September 11, 2018 at https://www.wfsb.com/news/bags-of-heroin-seized-during-drug-bust-in-hartford/article_3963837e-4c57-5c98-a538-f33967325fae.html
- NBCConnecticut.com. (2018). Half A Kilogram of Fentanyl Seized In Hartford Drug Raid That Sent Officers to Hospital. Retrieved on September 11, 2018 at https://www.nbcconnecticut.com/news/local/Half-a-Kilogram-of-Fentanyl-Seized-After-Hartford-Drug-Raid-That-Sent-Officers-to-Hospital-491629371.html
- World Population Review. (2021). Hartford, Connecticut Population 2021. Retrieved on December 29, 2021 from: https://worldpopulationreview.com/us-cities/hartford-ct-population
- NBC Connecticut. (2019). State Tracking Opioid Overdoses. Retrieved on December 29, 2021 from: https://www.nbcconnecticut.com/news/local/state-tracking-opioid-overdoses/139313/
- Mayo Clinic. (2018). How to Tell if a Loved One is Abusing Opioids. Retrieved on December 29, 2021 from: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/prescription-drug-abuse/in-depth/how-to-tell-if-a-loved-one-is-abusing-opioids/art-20386038