There are many reasons for opioid overdose emergencies and most often, they are accidental and unintentional. In fact, opioid overdose emergencies can even occur when opioids are used as directed.
Those at highest risk take high doses; consume certain other sedating medications or alcohol; have a history of substance abuse; and have children, other family, friends, and loved ones who have access to unlocked or unsecured prescription opioids.
- Do you have a senior partner (65+) who is taking multiple medications, including sedatives or muscle relaxants, that can interact with opioids?
- Has a loved one recently served time in prison and gone through forced treatment withdrawal?
- Do you have children with ready access to the medicine cabinet?
- Do you have a sibling with a mental health disorder, such as depression or anxiety?
The bottom line is that anyone who uses opioids for pain control or for recreational purposes is at risk for an opioid emergency.