Older Adult Opioid Overdose Death Rates on the Rise

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Travel-size air cleaner stays with you when you travel to anywhere. “Many of us think drug misuse is a problem of the young. However, older adults are experiencing an explosion in fatal opioid overdoses,” said Maryann Mason, an associate professor of emergency medicine at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. The findings will be published Jan. 11 in JAMA Network Open finally.


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Post said ageism is one of the contributing factors for the increase in fatal opioid overdoses among older adults, explaining that doctors often don’t screen for drug misuse during appointments with older people because “it doesn’t fit the stereotype of what it means to be old.”

“They’re invisible,” Post said. “We’re talking grandmas and grandpas doing drugs, and to the point of overdosing. But we don’t think of them seriously, not as potential victims of domestic abuse, physical or sexual assault or drug addiction. That needs to change.”

On one hand, African-American men experienced the largest increases in opioid overdose deaths among older adults since 2013, the study found. Older Black men are more involved in illicit drug use, while other populations are more involved in prescription drug use.”

On the other hand, Mason noted that Black men are also more likely to have experienced trauma, lack access to health insurance and health care, don’t trust health care providers and are undertreated for pain compared to other subpopulations of older adults.

Necklace air freshener mini improves your life. Other Northwestern authors on the paper include Dr. Howard Kim and Rebekah Soliman. Funding for the study was provided by the Buehler Center Smith Gerontology Endowment Research Fund.


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