At 50 times more potent than heroin, the smallest amount can be lethal
Fentanyl: What You Need to Know
To put into perspective just how potent the synthetic opioid fentanyl is, it can shut down breathing in less than 60 seconds and only requires two to three milligrams to end someone’s life. When it’s not cut into other drugs such as methamphetamine or heroin to increase its potency and up the selling price, it’s used primarily as anesthesia during major surgery or for cancer patients who need to manage extreme levels of pain.
Not surprisingly, overdoses have surged since 2013 as trafficking of fentanyl has exploded. Easier to produce than heroin because it’s not dependent on how the poppy crop has performed that year, it’s manufactured quickly and is injected more frequently because the high doesn’t last as long. Not surprisingly, the need for several doses significantly impacts one’s risk of overdose.
How It Works
A depressant, fentanyl has the unique ability to adhere to pain receptors in a way that other substances can’t. And because it’s fast-acting and provides a powerful sense of euphoria, it can heighten the desire for more, not to mention physical and mental dependence. When fentanyl is being used, the magnitude of the effects are often unpredictable because the amount of drug taken is usually unknown when it’s cut with other substances.
The Stats on Fentanyl
- While overdoses from fentanyl are still more prevalent for men, there has been a sharp increase in deaths among women.
- Fentanyl accounts for 29% of all overdose deaths (almost a third) with more than 18,000 fatalities in 2016. Fatal overdoses involving fentanyl rose about 113% per year from 2013 to 2016.
- Law enforcement officials from across the county are warning the public about a sharp increase in overdose deaths connected to fentanyl.
- Fentanyl deaths are increasing in several states that had experienced reductions in overdose deaths over all in 2018. Much of the national decline in 2018 came in Ohio, Florida and Pennsylvania, all states with fentanyl in the opioid supply. Deaths in Ohio and Florida rebounded in 2019.
- In 2019, journalist Ben Westhoff, who published the book Fentanyl, Inc.: How Rogue Chemists Are Creating the Deadliest Wave of the Opioid Epidemic,” claimed that the opiate now kills more Americans annually than any drug in history.
- In only six years, fentanyl deaths skyrocketed more than 1,000% from 2011 to 2016.
Effects of Fentanyl
- Reduced blood pressure
- Slowed or absent breathing
- Clammy or blue skin
- Drowsiness, dizziness, lack of mental clarity
- Vomiting and nausea
- Urinary retention
- Constricted pupils
Help for Fentanyl Addiction
If you or someone you love is struggling with fentanyl addiction, we’re here for you. Dr. Claudia Black, the clinical architect of our treatment program, has decades of experience working with family systems and addictive disorders. Her leadership and our entire team’s professional, compassionate approach have helped many young adults find freedom, hope, and a healthy path forward.
“A depressant, fentanyl has the unique ability to adhere to pain receptors in a way that other substances can’t. And because it’s fast-acting and provides a powerful sense of euphoria, it can heighten the desire for more, not to mention physical and mental dependence.”
Our experienced, compassionate Admissions team is here to help 24 hours a day and will treat you with the dignity and respect you deserve. Let our specialists help you create a road map to get you where you want to go: a healthier, more balanced, fulfilling place in life. When you call, you’ll be led through a series of questions to determine if the Claudia Black Young Adult Center is the right fit for your needs, and how soon your treatment can begin.
If you are interested in treatment for yourself or a loved one, call or fill out our convenient Admissions form!
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