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Abstract on Researchers Find Rate of Fatal Opioid Poisonings Among Children More Than Doubled Over 13-Year Span Original source 

Researchers Find Rate of Fatal Opioid Poisonings Among Children More Than Doubled Over 13-Year Span

The opioid epidemic has been a major public health concern in the United States for years. While much attention has been paid to the impact of opioids on adults, a new study has shed light on the devastating effects of these drugs on children. According to the study, the rate of fatal opioid poisonings among children has more than doubled over a 13-year span.

Introduction

The opioid epidemic has been a major public health concern in the United States for years. While much attention has been paid to the impact of opioids on adults, a new study has shed light on the devastating effects of these drugs on children. According to the study, the rate of fatal opioid poisonings among children has more than doubled over a 13-year span.

Background

Opioids are a class of drugs that include prescription painkillers like oxycodone and hydrocodone, as well as illegal drugs like heroin. These drugs are highly addictive and can cause serious health problems, including respiratory depression, coma, and death. The opioid epidemic has been fueled in part by the overprescription of these drugs, as well as the availability of illegal opioids like fentanyl.

Study Findings

The study, which was published in the journal Pediatrics, analyzed data from the National Vital Statistics System from 1999 to 2012. During this time period, there were 3,613 deaths due to opioid poisoning among children and adolescents aged 0 to 19 years. The rate of fatal opioid poisonings among children increased from 0.22 per 100,000 in 1999 to 0.58 per 100,000 in 2012. This represents a more than doubling of the rate over a 13-year span.

Factors Contributing to the Increase

There are several factors that may be contributing to the increase in fatal opioid poisonings among children. One factor is the increased availability of prescription opioids. In recent years, there has been a significant increase in the number of prescriptions for opioids, which has led to an increase in the number of pills available for misuse. Additionally, many children may be accidentally exposed to opioids through the improper storage or disposal of these drugs.

Impact on Children

The impact of opioid poisoning on children can be devastating. Children who survive an opioid overdose may suffer from long-term health problems, including brain damage and developmental delays. Additionally, the loss of a child due to opioid poisoning can have a profound impact on families and communities.

Prevention Strategies

Preventing opioid poisoning among children requires a multifaceted approach. One key strategy is to reduce the availability of prescription opioids. This can be done by improving prescribing practices and increasing access to alternative pain management strategies. Additionally, it is important to educate parents and caregivers about the proper storage and disposal of prescription opioids. Finally, increasing access to addiction treatment and recovery services can help prevent opioid misuse and overdose.

Conclusion

The opioid epidemic has had a devastating impact on communities across the United States. The findings of this study highlight the need for increased attention to the impact of opioids on children. By implementing prevention strategies and increasing access to addiction treatment and recovery services, we can work to reduce the number of fatal opioid poisonings among children and protect the health and well-being of our communities.

FAQs

Q: What are opioids?

A: Opioids are a class of drugs that include prescription painkillers like oxycodone and hydrocodone, as well as illegal drugs like heroin.

Q: What is the opioid epidemic?

A: The opioid epidemic refers to the widespread misuse of opioids, which has led to a significant increase in opioid-related deaths and health problems.

Q: How can opioid poisoning be prevented?

A: Preventing opioid poisoning requires a multifaceted approach, including reducing the availability of prescription opioids, educating parents and caregivers about the proper storage and disposal of these drugs, and increasing access to addiction treatment and recovery services.

Q: What is the impact of opioid poisoning on children?

A: The impact of opioid poisoning on children can be devastating, including long-term health problems and the loss of a child, which can have a profound impact on families and communities.

Q: What can be done to address the opioid epidemic?

A: Addressing the opioid epidemic requires a comprehensive approach, including improving prescribing practices, increasing access to alternative pain management strategies, and increasing access to addiction treatment and recovery services.

 


This abstract is presented as an informational news item only and has not been reviewed by a medical professional. This abstract should not be considered medical advice. This abstract might have been generated by an artificial intelligence program. See TOS for details.

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