What are the Most Common Drugs People Overdose On?

Bottle of prescription pills

Whether a person wants to admit it or not, an overdose is always in the back of their mind if they abuse drugs. They’re not the only ones concerned about a potential overdose. Their loved ones also lose sleep over the possibility of a fatal overdose. However, we don’t have to wait for an overdose to occur. We can get our loved ones help before they reach this point. 

How Likely is a Person to Overdose on Drugs

Let’s take a look at the most recent statistics from the drug overdose problem. These statistics were gathered from the CDC between the years of 2001 to 2014.

  • Overdose deaths from prescription drugs saw a 2.8-fold increase.
  • Overdose deaths from prescription opioid pain relievers saw a 3.4-fold increase.
  • Overdose deaths from benzodiazepines saw a 5-fold increase.
  • Overdose deaths from heroin saw a 6-fold increase.
  • Overdose deaths from cocaine increased by 42 percent.

Why Does Overdose Occur?

Overdose occurs when the body is overwhelmed by a particular drug or poison. The body can no longer process the substance and it begins to shut down. Though the body can sometimes heal itself, other times, it cannot. Permanent organ damage can occur as well as death.

What are the Most Common Drugs to OD On?

The most frequent drugs that people overdose on are:

  • Over-the-counter (OTC) drugs
  • Prescription pain relievers
  • Sedatives and antidepressants
  • Heroin
  • Methamphetamines
  • Cocaine
  • Drug combinations (i.e., heroin and alcohol)

What are the Signs of an Overdose?

It’s important to recognize the signs of a potential overdose so that you can get help before it’s too late. A person does not have to be unconscious to overdose as some people believe.

Here are the signs to watch for:

  • Seizure
  • Severe head pain
  • Severe chest pain
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Extreme confusion or delirium
  • Extreme agitation or anxiety

Don’t Wait to Call for Help

Do not let fear or shame stop you from getting a loved one help. Sometimes, people want to handle these situations on their own because they don’t want to involve law enforcement or a hospital. However, the police typically only show up if there is a death.

It’s also extremely helpful for doctors to know what substance your loved one overdosed on, as there are different treatments available depending on the drug. The stomach may be pumped or activated charcoal may be used. When doctors know how to treat the patient, they can administer treatment quickly and efficiently. Unfortunately, treatment isn’t always a guarantee.

Don’t wait for an overdose to happen to get help. Call The River Source today to discuss treatment options for yourself or a loved one.