Fentanyl is a high potency and synthetic opioid causing overdose and death in the United States. This highly addictive, synthetic opioid is 50 to 300 times more potent than morphine, making 2 milligrams of fentanyl a deadly dosage. While it was originally invented to treat severe cancer pain, its illegal use is growing swiftly and leading to rapid respiratory depression and damage of the internal organs, often resulting in death.
Addressing the Fentanyl Crisis: Addiction and Overdose
One Pill Can Kill: All Substance Users Are at Risk of Death by Fentanyl
Statistics indicate that fentanyl is currently the greatest drug threat in this country. Rates of overdose deaths involving fentanyl have increased drastically over the last few years:
∙Among teenagers, overdose deaths increased 94% from 2019 to 2020.
∙Fentanyl overdose rates are rising 2.5 times faster than heroin overdoses.
∙Fentanyl is a factor in 53% of overdose deaths nationwide.
∙In 2020 alone, there were 42,700 fentanyl overdose deaths.
Fentanyl is often mixed with drugs such as heroin, methamphetamines, cocaine and marijuana as a combination product, and more often than not, fentanyl is added without the drug user’s knowledge. It can also be present in fake prescription pills that look the same as prescription pills sold in a pharmacy. Those seeking to buy Percocet or Xanax from dealers through social media platforms are often given fentanyl instead or in combination with the drug purchased.
The DEA Laboratory has found that, of the fentanyl-laced fake prescription pills analyzed in 2022, 6 in 10 contain a potentially lethal dose of fentanyl. Hence why the DEA has created the “One Pill Can Kill” campaign. Even just a small dose of fentanyl, such as the amount on the tip of a pencil, can be deadly. Fentanyl overdose and addiction is a threat to all substance users, whether fentanyl is your drug of choice or not.
The Fentanyl Crisis in New Jersey
Fentanyl addiction and overdose is greatly impacting those in the New Jersey area. In 2012, fentanyl was found in just 42 of the 1,223 drug overdose deaths in New Jersey. In 2019, fentanyl was found in the bodies of 2,248 people, equaling 75% of drug deaths in the state.
The fentanyl crisis has made it clear. Now is the time for treatment for your addiction, whether it be to marijuana, cocaine, methamphetamines, prescription drugs, another substance or fentanyl itself.
Xylazine: Animal Sedative Mixed with Fentanyl
Imbedded in the threat of fentanyl is another, xylazine, also known as “tranq,” “tranq dope” and “zombie drug.” This animal tranquilizer is infiltrating street drugs in Philadelphia, New Jersey and beyond and causing wounds on the body so severe that they may lead to amputation. The drug leaves users in a blackout for hours, vulnerable to rape and robbery. In 2021, 90% of Philadelphia’s lab-tested dope samples were positive for xylazine. This drug is especially dangerous as it does not respond to typical opioid reversal treatment (such as naloxone).
Explore Addiction Treatment at Pinelands
If you have come to a crossroads in your life and don’t want to chance it with substances anymore, Pinelands can help. Our program offers medically supervised detox, evidence-based therapies for addiction and treatment for veterans — to help you take control of your life again, rebuild relationships with your loved ones and begin a fulfilling path to recovery. Our caring and supportive staff are here to support you as you navigate and overcome addiction. Our goal is to help you be successful in paving a new course for your life.