Opioid abuse a real concern in Wisconsin

Opioids have the potential to be abused, which is why they are only available via prescription. Some opioids are illegal to have, like heroin, because of the extreme potential for abuse.

Wisconsin has seen a rise in the abuse of opioids, which is a concern. With over 1,170,000 prescriptions for opioids written between January and March of 2015, it's easy to see how they get into the hands of those who abuse them. Since 2005, there has been a growing number of opioid-related deaths in the state, too.

According to a chart looking at the years 2005 through 2014, heroin-related deaths have skyrocketed from around 5 percent to around 33 percent. Methadone dropped from around 16 percent to 10 percent, showing an increase in the number of people using and abusing heroin in its stead.

Between 2011 and 2012, there was a 19.4 percent increase in the number of people being arrested for the sale of synthetic narcotics. This leads some to believe that the prescriptions and illegal drugs are becoming much easier to obtain, a serious concern for the state.

As someone accused of possessing or using opioids, it's important that you have the time and knowledge to protect yourself. A drug charge can and will change your life, whether or not you are convicted. It can affect your personal relationships, your relationship with your employer and the activities you participate in. Your attorney can help protect you against unfair charges, so you can continue to live the life you love and protect your reputation from harm as much as possible.

Source: Wisconsin.gov, "Misuse and Abuse of Opioids in Wisconsin," accessed June 16, 2017

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