Ohio’s Epidemic

Local News

A fast growing drug epidemic takes hold of the country and the State of Ohio.

The Ohio Attorney General’s Office reported that in 2012 there were over six hundred heroin related deaths in the state. One expert said it’s one of the fastest growing drugs and it’s not the stereotypical user taking part. These users are educated professionals.

"One large group of people are people who’ve been prescribed painkillers and when they get to the end of their treatment with painkillers, if they formed an addiction they’re going to want that high again," explained CEO of Muskingum Behavioral Health’s Steve Carrel. "They’re not going to want to go through that withdraw and they’ll graduate naturally to heroin."

Warning signs of addiction to heroin include coordination problems, seizures, finding needles or seeing burns or bruises. Some of these users don’t inject into their arms, they shoot in between their toes or the back of their knees.

"People that are addicted to heroin aren’t only good at hiding the marks they’re also very good at how socially they interact in their world," said Carrel. "They’re some of the hardest to identify."

Carrel said in Muskingum County heroin is treated on an out patient basis. The volume of those seeking treatment is so great they’re researching opening a Suboxone clinic. Suboxone is a drug that helps get people through the intense detox of opiates.

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