A Treatment Center Alumni Shares His Story of Hope and Recovery
More and more young people in Ohio are in need of inpatient drug rehab, because they are using heroin, according to The Ohio Substance Abuse Monitoring Network. The most commonly used type of the drug is black tar heroin. According to experts from drug rehabs, black tar heroin is the dirtiest form of heroin, usually cut with glass and other extremely harmful chemicals that can cause severe brain damage.
New heroin users in Ohio are most often suburban teenagers, white, and girls. Many of these users have switched from prescription pills to heroin. Inpatient drug rehabs have seen more heroin abusers recently because police have cracked down on prescription pill dealers, and drug companies have made it more difficult to abuse the drugs they manufacture.
Drug abusers are finding heroin to be cheaper and more easily accessible than pills. Drug rehabs understand that young people and heroin are not a good mix. Often, they arrive at inpatient drug rehabs having used heroin and mixing it with alcohol and other drugs, a deadly combination that often causes overdose and heart failure. Unfortunately, Ohio emergency rooms have seen their fair share of overdoses due to heroin. The police have seen their fair share of heroin related arrests, as well.
This year alone, Hamilton County Ohio prosecutors will prosecute over 900 heroin possession or trafficking cases. This number is up 131 percent compared to statistics from 2007.
Assistant Hamilton County Prosecutor Melynda Machol says, "Five years ago, I rarely saw heroin. Now, I’m seeing more heroin than cocaine. The increase I am seeing in my cases is shocking," Machol said.
Butler, Warren, and Clermont counties in Ohio are also seeing dramatic increases in heroin charges. Warren County prosecutor David Fornshell took office in February. He expected most of his work to be combating crack cocaine and meth. However, he was shocked to find that most of his case load comes from heroin related charges.
Clermont County’s Assistant District Attorney Woody Breyer sees the heroin epidemic in Ohio hitting his district hard as well, "We have a heroin explosion out here," he said, "It’s become so cheap and it’s coming in like crazy."
Teenagers in Ohio are in the midst of a deadly drug epidemic. Many of them do not understand the ramifications of what toll the drug will take on their lives the first time they try heroin. The state health department, police, and other agencies are doing all they can to stop the epidemic from spreading further, but so far their efforts have not been very successful. Drug rehabs are hoping these teenagers from Ohio will find help through treatment in order to save their lives.