Lewis County has many problems related to substance abuse. It includes mostly the opioid epidemic and the use of alcohol by its youth. But, this can be helped by, first, providing prevention services to those who are not yet addicted, and second, for those who have sadly already fallen into the dwindling spiral of addiction, they should be provided with access to drug treatment, such as outpatient or inpatient drug rehab services, detoxification programs, addiction counseling and aftercare services, so that sobriety can be maintained.
The Opioid Epidemic in Lewis County, NY
As we know, the opioid crisis is prevalent throughout the whole nation, and unfortunately, Lewis County is included in that. In early 2019, an update on the opioid crisis was done, so residents could be aware of the current situation regarding opioid abuse and addiction in the county. It warns people of its dangers and informs them of the symptoms of an opioid overdose and of what to do if someone around them has overdosed on opioids. In Lewis County, the number of fatalities caused by opioid overdoses were at 12 in 2017, and they went down to 4 in 2018. Even though they have lowered, they are still quite high and taking care of this issue is of high importance.
Alcohol Use by Lewis County's Youth
Our youth is unfortunately easily targeted by alcohol and other drugs, because a lot of them suffer from anxiety and stress, with school and/or family life, etc. And they are sometimes taught that taking drugs or alcohol is a way to fit in with their peers, hence they use these substances inappropriately. And, sadly, it happens often that the use of alcohol begins at home. In 2018, 55.5% of teens in Lewis County reported that they got their alcohol with their parent's permission in their own home. And, 66.4% said that in the 12 months before they were surveyed, the alcohol they drank was at home with their parents' permission. This is why it can be quite risky to provide your teens with alcohol at home.
Substance Abuse Prevention Programs in Lewis County, NY
We have gone over all the alarming statistics of drug and alcohol abuse in Lewis County, but there are several substance abuse prevention programs to help fight the monster that is addiction. First, there is the non-profit agency called the Mountain View Prevention Services, whose focus is educating the community about substance abuse, to help prevent it from happening. They have many services and programs, including training programs, a school-based prevention program and a youth advocacy program. There is also a coalition called the United Prevention (UP!) Coalition of Lewis County. Their mission is to help with the reduction of alcohol and other drug use by its youth. They wish for a community that helps its youth take part in healthy lifestyles, so as to not fall in the trap of substance abuse and addiction.