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The Dangers of an Opioid Addiction

According to the CDC, over 75% of the drug overdose deaths in 2021 involved an opioid, many of which were synthetic. Opioid addiction is very common in today’s world, and many people find themselves in the grip of addiction facing legal consequences as a result. What are some of the dangers of opioid addiction, and how can you get help?


The Dangers of Opioid Addiction


Opioids are a class of drugs that includes prescription pain relievers, like oxycodone and hydrocodone, and illegal substances like heroin. They are highly addictive, and their misuse can lead to a range of negative health consequences, including respiratory depression, overdose, and death. One of the most dangerous aspects of opioid addiction is its ability to quickly spiral out of control, which can cause individuals to engage in risky behaviors to sustain their addiction.


Beyond the immediate health risks, opioid addiction can also negatively impact your mental and emotional well-being. Over the past decade, opioid addiction has caused relationships to deteriorate, careers to be destroyed, and families to be torn apart. The cycle of addiction can be hard to break, and it can leave a permanent mark on families.


The Dangers of Fentanyl


One of the deadliest and most insidious opioids is fentanyl. Fentanyl is a type of synthetic opioid that was designed to help those with terminal illnesses, like cancer, cope with severe pain. It is up to 100 times stronger than morphine. In 2022, fentanyl was responsible for 200 deaths every day, and over 250,000 Americans have had a fatal overdose of fentanyl since 2018. Because it is so addictive and dangerous to use and abuse, fentanyl can go hand in hand with opioid addiction and desperate actions to obtain the substance.


Why Are Opioids and Opiates Particularly Dangerous?


Opioids and opiates are particularly dangerous because they can change the way that your brain works. By attaching to certain proteins in your brain, opioids can make your brain and body think that you need to keep taking the drug to survive. Those who have not had firsthand experience with opioid addiction often underestimate the tremendous toll that the addiction can take, and combined with the dangerous nature of many opioids like fentanyl, it could be a deadly combo.


The Legal Consequences of Opioid Addiction


When it comes to the legal consequences of opioid addiction, the repercussions can be severe and life-changing. The possession, distribution, or trafficking of opioids is a serious offense that can lead to lengthy prison sentences, hefty fines, and a permanent criminal record. These legal consequences not only impact the individuals directly involved in drug-related activities but also their friends, families, and communities.


To combat the opioid crisis, many jurisdictions have implemented stricter laws and harsher penalties for opioid-related offenses. Law enforcement agencies are cracking down on illegal opioid trafficking, and individuals involved in the distribution of these drugs face federal charges, which carry even more stringent sentences. This can lead to challenging situations, where those in the grip of opioid addiction find themselves forced to rapidly detox, which can be life-threatening, and find themselves feeling like there is no hope or future for them.


Is There Hope for You or Your Loved One?


Yes. Incarceration and harsh penalties alone do not address the root causes of addiction. You need an attorney who understands the tragedy of opioid addiction and who is willing to fight to get you access to addiction treatment programs, counseling services, and the help that you need. By getting real assistance on top of any legal consequences that you might face, you can truly break the cycle of addiction.


Partner with Atkinson Law. We’ll Take Care of You Like Family


At Atkinson Law, we listen to all our clients and protect their interests so they can receive a positive legal outcome.  We’ll work with you and give you the best possible recommendation for your future. To learn more about the potential legal dangers of opioid addiction, contact us today by calling (410) 882-9595 or visiting our website.