Alexandra Cameron, VP with iHeartMedia and cofounder of the National Opioid Action Coalition, joins us in studio. We continue our discussion on the opioid epidemic, discuss the history behind the epidemic, learn more about NOAC, and talk about how to remove the stigma associated with addiction.
Opioid addiction is one of the biggest health crisis to this day. 112 people’s lives are taken each day from this awful epidemic. It all began in 3400 B.C. when poppies were cultivated, Hippocrates acknowledged poppies usefulness as a narcotic and prescribed drinking poppy juice. Let’s break it down to the statistics, nearly 1.5 million people use prescription drugs non-medically, ⅘ people who are addicted to heroin, started with an addiction from prescription painkillers, as well as 50.5% of people who misuse prescription painkillers got them from a friend or relative for free, and only 22.1% got them from a doctor. It only takes one time to start an addiction to opioids.
Alexandra Cameron brings up how we can raise awareness throughout our community and through our own voice! We all have levels of influence, it can go from talking to your neighbor, to talking to your children’s coaches, or even teachers from your children’s school. We need to bring the attention in our schools as well. Discussion to the younger generation about prescription painkillers needs to be a priority in today’s education because of the rising epidemic it is becoming. Cameron mentions celebrities and companies who are helping open up this dialogue, It only takes one to bring rise to this fight!
No Judgement Zone:
Let’s talk about judgement. As a community, we need to be open and comfortable with the topic of addiction. To reduce the stigma, opioid users and people recovering from opioid addictions should be able to feel like they can have a safe place when talking about their personal endeavors. A safe spot needs to be known, that opioid users are not alone and can get help. Alexandra Cameron emphasizes on the matter that we can’t make change unless we reduce the stigma of addiction. We mentioned how there are programs across the nation to help strike this ongoing problem. We can all come together and help prevent this from happening.
Alexandra Cameron’s Twitter
National Opioid Action Coalition
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