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Losing a Loved One to a Drug Overdose

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February 11, 2021

Dealing with the death of any family member is tough. But coping with the loss of a child after an overdose on drugs is a hard pill to swallow. And knowing that the source of receiving the drugs was as easy to find as going to a social media account, makes the experience even more dismantling.

Language of Love podcast hostess, Dr. Laura Berman, experienced this very scenario. Her 16-year-old son, Samuel, recently died of a drug overdose after taking fentanyl-laced Xanax. How did he receive it? He communicated with a drug dealer via Snapchat and had the drugs delivered to his house. It was that easy to acquire. It was that easy to take. And that easy to lose his life.

“My heart is completely shattered, and I am not sure how to keep breathing,” said Dr. Berman about her son, who was a straight-A student.

She reshared a post on her Instagram story, which advised other parents to no longer have their teenagers use Snapchat. However, in the wake of this incident, a spokesperson from the social media platform told the online publication Page Six, “We are committed to working together with law enforcement in this case and in all instances where Snapchat is used for illegal purposes.”

The spokesperson went on to say, “We have zero tolerance for using Snapchat to buy or sell illegal drugs.”

At American Addiction Centers (AAC), a nationwide leader in addiction treatment, we understand the needs of those battling a substance use disorder to drugs like fentanyl or Xanax. Our physicians and professional staff have the compassion and expertise to treat patients with both medical detox and treatment. If you or a loved one is battling a substance use disorder or have relapsed, please reach out for help.

 

Fentanyl and Xanax

Losing a loved one to an overdose is devasting. And overdoses to fentanyl is more common than not. There has been an increase in overdose deaths associated with the potent substance.

In San Diego County, there were 152 fentanyl-related overdose deaths in 2019. However, in the first sixTeenage girl sitting with Xanax pills on floor months of 2020, there were likely 203 fentanyl-related deaths. Of those, 84 are awaiting confirmation and 119 have been confirmed.

The prescription drug, Xanax, is a benzodiazepine used to treat anxiety. However, because it’s so potent of a substance, it’s only recommended to be used for up to six weeks under medical supervision. Additionally, like fentanyl, rates of benzodiazepine have increased over the years.

Dr. Berman, as well as so many other parents, have lost children or other family members to drug overdoses. Raising awareness, providing information, and open communication between parents and children may help to decrease these overdose deaths.

If you are struggling with an addiction to fentanyl or Xanax, you’re not alone. There are resources available to help you achieve long-term sobriety and to live a healthy and productive life. Don’t let a battle with substance abuse hinder you. Please reach out to get the help that you need today.

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