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Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Stigma of Addiction Lives On

addiction
In a world dominated by technology, it is safe to say that film may be one of the more effective ways to get a message across and educating people about the dangers of substance use. With everyone constantly on their smartphones, in many way eschewing traditional media outlets like print and even television, it is vital that campaigns harness the power and global reach of the internet. Going even further, a multi-pronged approach using every available media format has the best chance at reaching the most people.

When it comes to addiction, there are so many factors to consider and it's difficult to know where to start. Millions of Americans need help, many of them do not even know where to begin. In some cases, the stigma of being branded an addict or an alcoholic is enough to keep one from seeking helping. Believe it or not, despite the rampant reports of overdose deaths taking around 100 American lives each day, a significant part of the opioid-prescribed population does not view painkillers as being all that dangerous.

 

Super Bowl PSA


During Super Bowl LI, there were two public service announcements (PSA) highlighting the need for safely storing one’s prescription opioids. The makers of the PSAs wanted to drive home the fact that drugs that are not properly stored place loved one’s at great risk. Americans lock up their firearms to keep them out of their children’s hands, but just store OxyContin in the family medicine cabinet. Parents admonish teens about texting and driving, yet more teenagers are likely to die from an overdose, than they will from texting and driving. If you have not seen the PSAs, you can take a moment to watch them below.

Safe:


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Smart Phone:


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Ending the Stigma of Addiction


It has been estimated that there are more than 2 million Americans struggling with an opioid use disorder. Yet, the clear majority of them do not have access or are willing to seek treatment. Unlike drug epidemics of our Nation’s past, which were primarily believed to be associated with poor people and minorities, the American opioid addiction epidemic has affected Americans from all walks of life. Showing firsthand what experts have been saying for years, addiction does not discriminate. Thus, chipping away at the stigma of the disease.

However, when it comes to the stigma surrounding substance use disorders, there is a lot more work to be done. Stigma serves just two purposes, creating feelings of shame and guilt in the afflicted, and discouraging them from seeking help. People battling cancer or other serious illnesses are never subjected to the kind of treatment addicts and alcoholics experience. In an effort to drive that point home, a substance abuse prevention and recovery organization known as First Call help create PSAs to raise awareness about stigma. We hope that every adult is exposed to the two videos below.

Addicts Hear Comments Cancer Patients Never Would:


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Addicts Hear Comments Parkinson’s Patients Never Would:


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