Drug use can start as a way to escape or to ease some aches and pains, but it can quickly make your life worse if you’re not careful and become a dangerous habit and risk for accidental death. Different drugs can affect your brain and body in many different ways.
How Dangerous is Substance Abuse?
All drugs have their risks of an overdose but when taken together it doubles the risk of an overdose and death. Drugs taken together can interact in ways that increase their overall effect. Many overdoses occur when people mix heroin or prescription opioids and/or alcohol with benzodiazepines such as Klonopin, Valium, and Xanax. Most fatal overdoses are the result of poly-drug use. Poly-drug use is very common especially in celebrities that have passed.
Today, more than 34 million people in the United States regularly abuse drugs according to a SAMHSA report. These choices are spurred by a combination of economic conditions, lifestyle, stress, poverty, upbringing, and even genetics. Popular lifestyle and the glamorization of the lives of the rich and famous, where drug use and alcohol abuse are common, can also contribute to wider acceptance of drugs.
Celebrity Deaths from Addiction
The tragic loss of a renowned celebrity or athlete to a drug or alcohol-related death is an event that often leaves many unanswered questions. Famous and much-loved celebrities have been the victims of such unfortunate circumstances. While many deaths may be due to misuse of illegal substances, these drugs are not always illicit – and an overdose may not always be intentional.
Tom Petty – He was an American singer and songwriter that died at the age of 66 in 2017 from an accidental overdose of prescription drugs including fentanyl and oxycodone. He had multiple medical problems, including emphysema, knee difficulties, and most significantly a fractured hip. He was prescribed pain medication for these problems and informed on the day of his death that his hip injury had worsened. Doctors concluded that the pain was simply unbearable and was the cause for his overuse of medication causing the accidental overdose.
Philip Seymour Hoffman – Philip was an American actor that died from acute mixed drug intoxication, including heroin, cocaine, benzodiazepines, and amphetamine in 2014 at the age of 46. Hoffman was a known addict but believed his drug use was under control for multiple years. A relapse seems to be the reason for the found heroin and prescription medications at the scene. It is believed it was an accidental overdose and he had taken many of the substances on the same day and may have remained in his system from earlier use, which caused the overdose when the heroin was taken.
Michael Jackson – He was an American Pop Singer and icon who died from cardiac arrest from acute propofol intoxication along with midazolam, lidocaine, diazepam, and lorazepam in 2009 at the age of 50. His physician had given Jackson various medications to help him sleep, and was later tried and charged with involuntary manslaughter.
Heath Ledger – He was an Australian actor who accidentally died from combined drug toxicity due to oxycodone, hydrocodone, alprazolam, diazepam, temazepam, doxylamine in 2008 at the age of 28. The combination of opiates and benzos was the main culprit but it was unknown where the source of the drugs came from; perhaps an unknown acquaintance because doctors know better than to combine those two medications and the same time.
Addiction Can Kill Anyone
Many of these deaths, whether accidental or on purpose are a result of mixing prescribed medications with other drugs (legal or illegal), alcohol, over-the-counter medications, or even herbal supplements. Drug-drug interactions may also play a role in drug-related deaths. For example, the consumption of multiple central nervous system depressants, such as opioid painkillers, sedatives, hypnotics, or alcohol may lead to an unintentional overdose due to severely depressed breathing.
Mixing illicit, prescription, or over-the-counter medications can be dangerous, and patients should always rule out drug interactions with their healthcare provider. The use of prescription medications with illegal drugs or alcohol can produce an unpredictable and fatal response, and many deaths due to such circumstances may have been preventable.
Professional Help for Substance Use Disorders
If you or a loved one may think you have a problem with substance abuse Allure Detox can help you get back on the right track. We deliver safe, compassionate, and highly individualized care on a medical basis. Read on to learn more about who we are and why we’re one of the best drug and alcohol detox facilities in the industry. Start living today.