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There a lot of issues that are stigmatized in society, whether it be mental illness, drugs, or other various health issues. That is just to name a few and I am sure there are tons more. So, why did society become that way? Was society always so intolerant or naive to these issues?
One of the reasons is the lack of education about these issues. People are afraid of the unknown and how would society know about these issues unless they are publicized? Without education about these issues, society has grown intolerant to severe issues.
From a young age we are taught what is right and what is wrong. As we age we develop our belief system and recognize our morals. When we age we become more likely to stick to those belief and morals patterns. In other words, it can be harder to change. Some people become "stuck in their ways" and are afraid or unwilling to change. This can be dangerous as the word around us changes. Therefore, society as a whole needs to change their view on these issues or we are going to keep falling backwards and never move forward.
Narcan (Naloxone) has been around for awhile and it is used when an individual overdoses on Opioids. This concept has been recently adapted by the Phoenix Police Department. However, there have been several controversy articles and opinions about the idea of saving "junkies." I support the idea that the Police Department have received training on this because hopefully it will demolish the negative stigma of "junkies."
Now, I use the term "junkies" in quotes because addiction is a brain disease. While everyone does have a choice, many users turn to drugs as an escape from something in their life. They use drugs to feel alive. However, most people do not realize how easily the drugs can consume their lives. Shortly after the drug is exposed to the body a "high" feeling is present. Unfortunately, that feeling quickly disappears and after continuous use, the "high" feeling is normal. Withdrawal then quickly comes and the user consumes the drug to escape the withdrawal symptoms. They expect that "high" feeling, but that too goes away and the user gets trapped in an endless cycle. The user now uses drugs to feel normal.
Some people do not understand that sometime using drugs is not a choice. They need it to lessen the withdrawal symptoms. As someone who works with these patients, I want to get the word out to hopefully stop the spread of the negative stigma.
Many people would disagree that Narcan should not be used to revive these people from overdose. Some would argue that they knowingly use substances that can kill them and "resources should not be wasted on these individuals." Many patients are aware of how dangerous the drug is however, who are we as society to determine who we save and how we do not? If your family member was the one to overdose would you let them die? Or would you want to have the option to save them?
One of the great things about Narcan is that is can be administered several times to one individual so they can become coherent. It is also easy to administer and is usually easily accessible.
Society needs to be enlightened about many issues that are relevant. The drug epidemic is just one. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion. However, when the opinion is is created out of naivety is when there is a problem. Being naive is an excuse. Before sharing your opinion, check whether it is because your naive or actually intolerant to certain issues.