Dear Community Member,
The nonmedical use and abuse of prescription drugs is a serious public health problem in our country. Prescription drug abuse includes everything from taking a friend’s prescription painkiller for a backache to snorting or injecting ground-up pills to get high. Drug addiction and overdose deaths are increasing nationwide, and no community is immune, not even ours.
Last week’s local prescription drug arrests will impact us all in some way. Law enforcement, treatment agencies, medical facilities, and a multitude of community partners have come together to help increase conversations about education, awareness, treatment options, and other solutions. Prescription drug addiction is not limited to any one age group, economic group, or neighborhood.
Our thoughts go out to those who have lost a friend, family member, or physician. If you’re a patient of Dr. Rand’s, the office will be manned from 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. daily to facilitate patient retrieval of medical records. If you have a valid narcotic prescription from Dr. Rand, rest assured that you’re not the target of an investigation.
For your reference, here are some signs of possible prescription drug abuse and withdrawal:
-Restlessness, agitation, sudden change in behavior
-Poor judgement, confusion and memory problems
-Nausea, vomiting, sweating, dry mouth and seizures
An excellent source for drug abuse symptoms and impact information can be found in the co-sponsored DEA/FBI video “Chasing the Dragon, the Life of an Opiate Addict” on YouTube here.
If you know someone who is going through opioid withdrawal, please seek medical help. Those who go through withdrawal without the aid of a medical provider are more likely to overdose. In 2015, the Nevada State Legislature passed a Good Samaritan Drug Overdose Act which provides access to Naloxone, a drug that can reverse the effects of an opioid overdose, and freedom from arrest or prosecution for a person who in good faith seeks medical care for himself or another person experiencing an overdose. If you live with someone who uses prescription opioids, you may want to obtain a prescription for Naloxone. The pharmacy at Northern Nevada HOPES in Reno has a standing prescription available, so anyone can go to the HOPES pharmacy to purchase Naloxone without a prescription.
For more information about prescription drug abuse symptoms and local resources, visit the Resources page on www.healthiernv.org or contact the Substance Abuse Help Line at (775) 825- HELP (4357).