The New Normal: What you should know about fentanyl use in the US
Nearly 300 people die from a drug overdose every day. Opioids are the main driver of those overdose deaths.
News 12's Elizabeth Hashagen was joined by Dr. Jeff Reynolds to talk about drug overdoses.
A worrying trend is the shift to intentional use of fentanyl. A growing number of people have become so tolerant to opioids like heroin that they're turning to the synthetic compound, which is up to 50 times stronger.
The National Center for Health Statistics says fentanyl was involved in the vast majority of overdose deaths by fentanyl.
Here's what you should know to keep your loved ones safe:
Understand fentanyl's effects. Fentanyl is a potent and fast-acting drug, two qualities that also make it highly addictive. A small quantity goes a long way, so it's easy to suffer an overdose. With fentanyl, there is only a short window of time to intervene and save a person's life during an overdose.
The best way to prevent fentanyl use is to educate your loved ones, including teens, about it. Explain what fentanyl is and that it can be found in pills bought online or from friends. Aim to establish an ongoing dialogue in short spurts rather than one long, formal conversation.