When properly used, prescription painkillers can be effective tools for managing discomfort and assisting with healing. However, if abused, they can be lethal.
PAINKILLER OVERDOSE SYMPTOMS
- Unresponsive and unconscious
- Unable to talk
- Limp body
- Pale, clammy face
- Fingernails turn blue or purple
- Dark skinned people turn grey or ashen
- Slow erratic or stopped breathing
- Slow erratic or stopped pulse
- Gurgling or choking noises
What to do if you believe someone has overdosed
- Call 911 Immediately
- Don’t Leave them alone
- If possible, walk them around or keep them awake
- If they are unconscious, attempt to wake them
ABOUT THE ANTIDOTE – NALOXONE
Naloxone, also known by its brand-name of Narcan, is a synthetic drug that reverses the effects of a prescription painkiller overdose. If administered in time, naloxone can save the life of an individual who has overdosed on opioids. Hospitals and first responders have used it for decades. But naloxone is now available by prescription and requires little training – it can be administered by someone who witnesses an overdose. Naloxone can be sprayed into the nose or injected into a muscle with a syringe.
- Harm Reduction Coalition. (2018). Recognizing opioid overdose.
- Naloxoneinfo.org. (2018). Frequently asked questions about Naloxone.
- National Conference of State Legislatures. (2018). Drug overdose immunity and Good Samaritan Laws.
- Partnership for Drug Free Kids. (2018). Implications of Naloxone availability.