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Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that has an extremely high potency, more specifically a potency that is 50 times more potent than heroin, and it also causes side effects that are similar to heroin. It is legally prescribed and used for pain management, both during and after surgery, but these days, it is sadly often made and sold illegally on the streets, and since you never truly know what's in the drugs you're being sold, it makes it even dangerous, especially for a drug as potent as fentanyl, knowing that it only takes a small amount to kill someone. Fentanyl is a dangerous drug that is responsible for countless overdose deaths in the nation and many deaths in North Dakota. Much of the illegal fentanyl used is non-pharmaceutical and is made in other countries and smuggled into the United States. Unfortunately, the drug is cut into illegal street drugs such as cocaine, heroin, and even methamphetamine. The drug is also made to look like illegal pain medication. Unsuspecting drug users who consume illicit substances are likely to experience an overdose or even death due to fentanyl. Opioid addicts in the state searching for treatment have access to a broad set of treatments. However, most drug users and or family members go through an addiction assessment. An assessment process is a practical approach because it determines if there is an addiction and what the extent of the problem is. Also, the assessment process does narrow down treatment options so that drug users can find the treatment they need. Fentanyl detox and rehab treatments in ND provide practical treatment solutions to help drug users and their families.


Fentanyl Information, Statistics, and Tips to Stay Safe

Tips to Combat Fentanyl Abuse

  • Never stop taking medication without consulting a doctor.
  • Consider joining a support group to help you with your addiction.
  • Look for medical detox programs specialized in opioid detox.
  • If you have a loved one or an employee who you know is abusing opioids, keep naloxone handy.
  • Be aware of signs of overdose. If you see one of your friends blacking out, or showing other severe side effects, get help immediately.

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Opioid addiction is not easy to treat, and the first treatment step is withdrawal management. Opioid withdrawal refers to a wide range of symptoms that occur after stopping the use of opioid drugs. Typically, the withdrawal symptoms can last about ten days, or even longer. However, some underlying factors contribute to the severity of opioid withdrawal. For example, these are pre-existing medical conditions, the frequency of drug use, and how much of the drug has been used. Withdrawal management, when treating opioid addiction, involves the use of medication. The medication is used to control the withdrawal symptoms. The standard approaches used are medication-assisted treatment and or an opioid treatment program. However, medication-assisted treatment does not sustain long-term sobriety. Following withdrawal management, any drug user needs to receive behavioral counseling or some form of therapy. The counseling process addresses underlying issues, helps with coping skills, and teaches the patient how to maintain his or her sobriety.

Fentanyl Addiction and Opioid Abuse Prevention in North Dakota

Like many other states, North Dakota has a prescription drug monitoring program. A program is a tool that gives practitioners and prescribers the ability to look up a patient's controlled substance use. The PDMP in the state is operated by the North Dakota State Board of Pharmacy. The program has been effective in preventing drug diversion, prescription drug abuse, and over-prescribing. Some of the signs of abuse and diversion include selling prescription drugs, forging or altering a prescription, stealing or borrowing reported drugs, and taking more than the prescribed dosage. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in 2018, the opioid prescribing rate in the state was 37.4 opioid prescriptions per 100 residents. The national average that year was 51.4 opioid prescriptions per 100 persons. The North Dakota Prevention Resources and Media Center offers various prevention resources to help drug users and their families. In 2017 there were 68 deaths in the state, and the number of overdose deaths in the state increased from 20 deaths in 2013 to 68 in 2017. Prevention and rehabilitation are a practical approaches used to help people access the treatment they need.

Additional Fentanyl Information & Statistics in North Dakota

The drug fentanyl is known to heighten the potency of heroin, and this will lead to deadly respiratory depression. When the drug is mixed with cocaine, it will compound the toxic influence of the drug. Throughout the state of North Dakota, drug problems affect numerous families and individuals, and opiate addiction does play a big role in this. Fentanyl is a drug that is used within a hospital setting for extreme cases of pain, such as with cancer pain. The drug is also prescribed to people who suffer from chronic pain, and those who have a tolerance for every other opioid and require fentanyl because of its strength. When someone unknowingly takes the drug, it can cause immediate respiratory failure leading to death. This is very common among people who use heroin and or cocaine, and this is why there is an opioid epidemic across the United States.

In the state of North Dakota, fentanyl hasn't caused as much damage as it has in many other states but is still present and an issue that should be addressed. First, it is important to know that the Drug Enforcement Administration classifies fentanyl as a Schedule II controlled substance, which means that its potential for abuse is high and that it is considered to be a dangerous drug. Back in November 2019, a mother in North Dakota was put behind bars after her baby, 8 months of age, apparently overdosed on opioids. A mixture of fentanyl and heroin was left on the bed, and the infant got into it, and she failed to contact authorities, as only the father called them once he got to the scene and noticed the baby was not breathing. These drugs are very dangerous for adults, and even more harmful for young children. So, this shows us that fentanyl is prevalent in North Dakota and the issue could get much worse if nothing is done to address it.

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CONTRIBUTORS TO THIS ARTICLE

Marcel Gemme, DATS

Marcel Gemme, DATS

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on June 24, 2022

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Marcel Gemme has been helping people struggling with addiction for over 19 years. He first started as an intake counselor for a drug rehabilitation center in 2000. During his 5 years as an intake counselor, he helped many addicts get the treatment they needed. He also dealt with the families and friends of those people; he saw first-hand how much strain addiction puts on a family and how it can tear relationships apart. With drug and alcohol problems constantly on the rise in the United States and Canada, he decided to use the Internet as a way to educate and help many more people in both those countries. This was 15 years ago. Since then, Marcel has built two of the largest websites in the U.S. and Canada which reach and help millions of people each year. He is an author and a leader in the field of drug and alcohol addiction. His main focus is threefold: education, prevention and rehabilitation. To this day, he still strives to be at the forefront of technology in order to help more and more people. He is a Licensed Drug and Alcohol Treatment Specialist graduate with Honours of Stratford Career Institute. Marcel has also received a certificate from Harvard for completing a course entitled The Opioid Crisis in America and a certificate from The University of Adelaide for completing a course entitled AddictionX: Managing Addiction: A Framework for Succesful Treatment.