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International Overdose Awareness Day 2016

Overdose Awareness DayAugust 31, 2016 is International Overdose Awareness Day. Please join us in wearing a silver ribbon today if you have lost someone you cherished to an overdose or to show support to those who have. While death by an overdose can be accidental or pre-meditated, these deaths are often preventable. Although many overdoses have resulted in the use of illegal street drugs, such as heroin, or synthetic drugs, like spice or bath salts, the prevalence of prescription drugs in society has increased deaths by an exponential amount over the last decade. The proliferation and availability of prescription pain medications contribute to a huge overdose mortality rate: “Overdoses of prescription painkillers are responsible for one death every 19 minutes in the United States. In the past 20 years prescription overdoses have tripled, leading to 14,800 deaths in 2008.” This is a mind-boggling and sobering statistic. In most cases, even deliberate overdoses, this can be prevented by awareness, prevention, intervention, and treatment.

Overdose Awareness Day

Remembering Those We Have Lost

If you have ever lost a friend or a loved one due to a drug overdose, or knew someone that was permanently injured as a result, you can help support by spreading the the message of awareness and remembrance. The history of the movement is a story reflecting the grassroots effort to help and advocate the cause: “International Overdose Awareness Day” originated in Melbourne, Australia in 2001. Sally Finn, manager of a Salvation Army needle and syringe program, was touched by the sorrow she observed among the friends and families of those who had overdosed. She witnessed their inability to express that sorrow because of the stigma surrounding people who use drugs. Sally decided to organize an event of remembrance. To commemorate those who had died, or were permanently injured from an overdose, Sally hit upon the idea of distributing ribbons. She thought she’d need 500, she gave out 6,000. Eleven years later, that one event in the back yard of a suburban crisis center has evolved into what is now widely known around the world as International Overdose Awareness Day. Its global significance reflects the universality of the human emotions triggered by the tragedy of overdose – a tragedy that’s preventable.”

Helping Addicts Recover

Please remember that help is available for those suffering from drug addiction or have a loved one that is suffering from any type of drug or alcohol abuse. It is helpful even to be cognizant that someone who may take medication responsibly still can be at risk of an overdose, depending on the potency and frequency of the drug taken. Another fact to be aware of is the danger of mixing prescription drugs with other drugs or alcohol. The combination could be a deadly one. Join us on facebook today, and every day, in raising awareness and supporting a cause that celebrates life and recovery!

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