Fentanyl is quickly becoming a nationwide issue. It is currently considered the number one drug leading to opioid overdose deaths in America. And, it’s no different in the state of Florida. In 2018, cocaine killed more people in Florida than any other drug. Why cocaine? Because it is commonly being laced with lethal doses of fentanyl.
By understanding what fentanyl is and how it is affecting Florida, it might be possible to take steps towards fighting the opioid epidemic and saving lives.
What is Fentanyl?
Fentanyl is a powerful synthetic opioid analgesic that has properties similar to morphine. The major difference is that fentanyl is 50 to 100 times stronger than morphine, making it much more dangerous. As a Class II prescription drug, it is mostly intended to treat patients with chronic and severe pain from surgeries.
Prescription names for fentanyl include:
Street names for fentanyl include:
- China Girl
- China Town
- Dance Fever
- Great Bear
When used as a prescription under a doctor’s supervision, fentanyl can be given as a shot, patch or lozenge. Illegally, the drug is sold as powder, nasal sprays, eyedroppers or pills that resemble a prescription opioid.
Signs of a Fentanyl Addiction
If you suspect your loved one might have a problem with opioids or fentanyl, there are some signs you should look for. Typically, fentanyl is abused by injecting or ingesting the drug. It can be difficult to detect because there are also patches that can be placed under the tongue or in the cheek cavity.
Some side effects that are common with fentanyl abuse include:
- Headaches and dizziness
- Stomach pain
- Swelling of the arms, feet or legs
- Extreme drowsiness
- Chest pain
In more extreme cases, it’s not uncommon for individuals to experience unconsciousness or respiratory arrest. When fentanyl is abused, it’s difficult to predict the effects because it’s usually not known how much of the drug was ingested.
Florida and Fentanyl: Fighting Back
Professional agencies are working across Florida to fight back against the opioid epidemic. In 2018, Florida spent more than a billion dollars in 2018 to treat opioid-related problems. By adding treatment centers across the state, leaders are making programs more readily available to help the general public.
The state treatment centers have been trained to provide medication-assisted opioid addiction treatment, and have experienced a higher success rate through this approach. During these desperate times, Florida continues to pioneer drug rehabilitation efforts.
Holistic Addiction Treatment in Treasure Island, Florida
If you or a loved one is struggling with a fentanyl addiction, you don’t have to fight the battle alone. At Footprints Beachside Recovery, we offer holistic healing for your mind, body and spirit. Each person gets an individualized treatment plan and support throughout their recovery journey. Contact us today to speak with a trained admissions counselor or to learn more about our offerings.