By Kevin McCauley, MD, Senior Fellow at The Meadows
I have this shocking statement I sometimes make in my lectures: “Heroin addicts are sweet people.”
I say this partly because I’m an addict myself and I tend to make hyperbolic statements for their emotional impact (not my best quality). But I also do it to push back against the tired trope that addiction can be reduced to a personality disorder. This is what I learned in medical school: put bluntly, addicts are sociopaths.
In 1999, the leading cause of death was car accidents. Nearly twice as many people died in a car accident as died from a fatal drug overdose. By 2014, those numbers were reversed. There were almost 40 percent more deaths from drug overdoses than from car crashes. Most of today’s overdoses stem from prescription opioids and heroin, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
By: Kelli Wagner, Behavioral Health Technician, The Meadows
Christmas carols, the spirit of giving, joy and laughter; this is what the holidays are all about...right?
The following is a transcript of the speech read on behalf of Meadows Behavioral Healthcare CEO Sean Walsh at the 2016 Gratitude for Giving Breakfast Awards Ceremony. Sean was recognized with the Compassion Award.
U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy’s release of Facing Addiction in America: The Surgeon General’s Report on Alcohol, Drugs, and Health at yesterday’s Facing Addiction Summit was an unprecedented moment in our country’s fight against addiction and substance misuse. It is the first time in history that a U.S. surgeon general has issued a report focused on drug and alcohol addiction. The report comes at a time when more and more Americans are struggling with the effects of addiction to opioids and heroin. One person dies every 19 minutes from an opioid or heroin overdose. And, the statistics related to other addictions are no less grim. One in seven people in the United States will face a substance misuse disorder, and only 10 percent will get the treatment they need to overcome it.