From: Brooklyn, NY
School: Virginia State University
A solution in the midst of a problem
We as a nation are dealing with an addiction crisis. A crisis that takes people’s lives away everyday. An addiction that puts others around them in danger because they aren’t receiving the help they need. Due to rehabilitation centers being expensive or addicts just don’t know what resources are out there. This is why it’s important that the nation understand what they’re dealing with, in terms of the crisis, and how addicts are being punished by themselves and from others. Also, why the addiction crisis could be fixed if we try hard enough.
Addiction is one of those touchy topics that no one wants to talk about unless they have been affected by it or have someone close to them that deals with it. We, as a nation, are dealing with an addiction crisis because there is a lot of chaos around people that becomes too much to handle. In America, there are some in either lower class, some who have depression, but can not talk to anyone about it, death, and even people who feel lost. To cope, people turn to drugs and alcohol because there is easy access. It is a crisis here in the United States because it is easy to receive those addictive things. No matter how many laws and regulations are in place, if a person wants a controlled substance or alcohol, they will find a way to get it for them or manipulate the system to get the things they need. For an example, people would go to doctors for pain medication from an injury and they’ll become addicted to the medication causing them to keep going back to lie about their symptoms. Or some would find people who illegally sell drugs and other things.
There are several consequences for people with addictions. One consequence of those suffering from addiction is physical harm. Physical harm could be scars, drastic weight change, and liver failure. Addicts could cause physical harm by sticking themselves with needles or the misuse of drugs or alcohol. A second consequence is psychological. When a person abuses a controlled substance or alcohol, their behavior and emotions begin to change. People feel like they have already hit rock bottom and can see no clear path back to normalcy, so they do not change. In addition to the personal physical and psychological consequences of an addict’s experiences, they must also face the consequences of society. Society shuns people with addictions. People view people with addiction as below them, so some wouldn’t help them let them go deeper into the whole of dependencies. In other cases, members of society will continue to supply addictive substances to addicts to ensure a steady money flow. A third and most fatal consequence is death. Addiction has such a sharp end because addicts do not have a stop button. They can die from an overdose or some other accident or injury they sustained while under the influence. If a person with addiction does a crime for their next high, they will arrest them without rehabilitation. The majority of jails have drug problems that give addicts another way to get high instead of helping them recover.
Though the addiction crisis is severe, we can still remedy the situation on an individual and societal level. We can solve this crisis for the individual by reaching out more to those in need. One way to do that is by broadcasting the addiction hotline and more addiction-help commercials on television and the radio. A second way we can outreach is by posting signs in public places like buses, trains, parks, and libraries. A third was we can outreach through wellness checks. Groups can help addicts find a support group if they do not already have one. To do so, groups would go to areas where there is a large population of addicts and talk to them. The group can give them the location where one can come and talk or get the help they need to stop. The group can provide Alcoholics Anonymous meetings or assistance in enrolling in rehabilitation centers. In society, we can remedy this crisis by denormalizing controlled substances. It’s common in low-income communities that people don’t view it as a problem, but another day to be in the neighborhood. Society can give businesses a protocol for when addicts come by to redirect them or call 911 to the help they need. Give addicts who have a criminal record a chance at employment to regain control of their lives. Lastly, they could remedy this crisis in society is don’t look down on them because they are an addict, but help them grow and adjust to society.
In conclusion, this is an explanation to why this crisis is progressing with physical and mental harm to addicts. The society that we live in is doing more harm than good by keeping supplying them with drugs and not giving them the necessary help like rehabilitation programs. The nation could get out of this crisis by just offering the help and letting them know that the help is available if you truly want to change. Being addicted to something could be temporary if you really want to change, so why not help them if you could.