These Children Need Our Help
Drug and alcohol addiction adversely impacts families, especially children, nobody would argue that. As discussed in the article linked below, there are many ways this occurs.
There has been an alarming increase in child abuse and neglect cases as the opioid epidemic continues to progress. When an addict is consumed with getting and using drugs, everything else loses importance, even their children. Families become broken. For the ‘lucky’ children, their extended families become their caretakers, but they can grow up feeling abandoned and many develop addiction issues of their own. Where foster care placement numbers were on the decline, recent years have seen an increase that seems to parallel the rise in opioid abuse.
Those abusing substances do not make good choices, unplanned pregnancies lead to poor prenatal care which result in low birth weight and mental and physical problems. Many pregnant women fill prescriptions for opioids potentially leading to Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (see my blog http://blog.unlikelyaddict.com/?p=163 ).
Accidental opioid overdoses in toddlers and children have skyrocketed in recent years. Too many are exposed to opioids in their homes where they are supposed to be safe. Adolescent overdose deaths are soaring as well, many of whom started using with their parents or were exposed to prescription drugs after surgery or an injury and progressed to heroin when the pills became too expensive. There is even an increase in child and teen suicide rates that some say is related to the opioid crisis.
In Milwaukee, eight children have died of opioid poisoning since late 2015, all from legal substances like methadone and oxycodone. To read more stories on this devastating topic, read here…
There has been movement on the government level to make changes to help those who are addicted. But we, as those who aren’t addicted or are recovering from addiction, need to be there for these children. We need to do everything we can to stop this epidemic and to help addicts and their children.