Drug and Alcohol Addiction in Bowling Green, Kentucky
Kentucky experiences far more than its fair share of residents addicted to illicit drugs. The opioid epidemic America is grappling with has hit Kentucky harder than virtually anywhere else. Some regions of Kentucky see overdose death rates of more than double the national average. Communities like Bowling Green and the larger and nearby Louisville, lose lives to opioids like fentanyl and heroin, but are actively attempting to find ways to reduce these numbers. Warren county, home to Louisville and Bowling Green, is the county with the highest rates of substance abuse in Kentucky.
Prescription Opioid Abuse in Bowling Green
Bowling Green battles high rates of opioid abuse. Opioid abuse typically originates from medical patients seeking pain relief from doctors. They are prescribed medications to help, but quickly begin to depend on the euphoric effects of the medication and may take more than prescribed. Patients, now addicted to the substance, may find alternate drugs that provide equal or more powerful effects. In instances where patients are overprescribed prescription opioids, they most often eventually turn to heroin.
Increasing Heroin and Fentanyl Abuse in Bowling Green
Heroin is one of the most commonly abused illicit substance in Bowling Green. Heroin is often cheap and easily accessible, but its powerful effects are often deadly. Ex-patients who have dabbled with prescription opioids like Oxycodone, Morphine, Methadone and Hydrocodone, for instance, often find heroin less expensive and stronger, and the rates of heroin abuse are on the rise, despite the high level of danger.
Fentanyl, which has 50 to 100 times the potency of Morphine, is increasingly abused in Bowling Green. It is sought out for its ability to connect to the body’s opiate receptors and release endorphins. However, fentanyl has effects such as:
- Slowed breathing
- Fatal and non-fatal overdose
In addition to these symptoms, individuals can experience addiction and withdrawal. Withdrawal for such a potent and harmful substance can create extremely discomforting symptoms that require professional intervention.
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Knowing When You May Need Help
Substance use and substance abuse falls into different tiers based on varying factors:
A tolerance is the mildest form of a human’s interaction with a substance. At this stage, the individual begins taking a higher amount of the substance or prescription drug than necessary. This stage includes the individual having a comfort level with the original prescription or amount of alcohol, and it takes more for them to feel a “buzz”. A tolerance is not the same as an addiction, and individuals may find it easier to quit a drug at this stage.
A dependency includes a craving for the substance. The individual has abused the substance regularly and their body has already begun to need its presence to “function normally.” They crave the substance for emotional, psychological, or physical reasons. The individual may experience the painful symptoms of withdrawal if they go too long without their substance of choice.
Addiction is the final stage of substance abuse that is the most harmful. Individuals experiencing addiction are fully dependent on the substance, abusing it on a regular basis. An addiction is the most detrimental to an individual as the substance abused consumes them. People struggling with substance abuse disorders may be in isolation to use the drug. They may endanger family and friends, risk their wellbeing, and lose control over their lives. Sadly, some individuals spiral into a life of depression and danger, as their addictions may draw in unsavory people and circumstances.
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Although substance abuse disorders are on the rise in Bowling Green, all hope is not lost. If you or a loved one grapples with substance abuse, there is help available. Contact a treatment provider today.