The opioid epidemic is a national crisis that is akin to the war on terror. It affections millions of people nationwide and causes a massive amount of deaths every single day. The National Institute on Drug Abuse states that “every day, more than 130 people die after overdosing on opioids.” This number is almost 2.5 times more than my graduating senior class and is much too high. (National Institute on Drug Abuse, 2017).

With an average of 130 deaths a day, the number of people who veinly lose their lives annually is staggering. Going back to the NIDA, they state, “In 2017, more than 47,000 Americans died as a result of an opioid overdose.” Living in a town of 2,000 people, this number is nearly incomprehensible, as it would be equal to my entire small town dieing about 23.5 times over again. Every one of these deaths was preventable as well (NIDA).

Even with as many deaths caused by opioids, these pills serve an extremely important role in the field of medicine. They help countless numbers of people heal swiftly and properly. In a paper titled, Pain and Poppies: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of Opioid Analgesics, published by The Journal of Neuroscience, Trang, at all, states that, “Opioids are particularly effective for treating acute moderate-to-severe pain after surgery or trauma, and they are quintessential drugs in a physician’s pharmacological toolbox for managing chronic pain.”

This states that these drugs are extremely important when treating pain for severe-acute pain, which many people, including myself, have to or have had to suffer through. It is very painful  (Trang, et al).

Throughout my research for this paper, the conclusion that has been made is that there is a very large problem in society. That problem is these addictive narcotics. Countless people are affected by these pills, whether it is someone who actually loses their life for their addiction, or their families and friends who get to clean up the mess. This problem is only getting worse and will continue to do so.

With that said, these drugs are very helpful and mandatory for the healing process to work properly and effectively. Opioids should still be prescribed, but only when necessary to relieve debilitating pain.   


  • Bose, J., Hedden, S. L., Lipari, R. N., & Park-Lee, E. (n.d.). 2017 NSDUH Annual National Report. Retrieved May 3, 2019, from
  • Brande, L. (2018, November 25). Oxycodone Effects | Short Term, Long Term & Side Effects. Retrieved May 3, 2019, from
  • National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2019, January 22). Opioid Overdose Crisis. Retrieved May 3, 2019, from
  • National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2017, April 24). Trends & Statistics. Retrieved May 2, 2019, from
  • Opioid Overdose. (2018, December 19). Retrieved May 3, 2019, from
  • Public Affairs. (2019, January 22). What is the U.S. Opioid Epidemic? Retrieved May 3, 2019, from
  • Thomas, S. (2019, April 29). Addiction Statistics | Drug & Substance Abuse Statistics. Retrieved May 2, 2019, from
image_printPrint this page.


0 0 votes
Rate This Post
Notify of
Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
February 14, 2020 11:25 pm

Hi Brett, I think it’s good that you’re bringing this topic up because with the amount of deaths per day from opioids (130) this should have more attention than it does. You did a good job about discussing what benefits opioids have in the medical field, but it would be helpful to hear about alternative solutions that could do similar jobs that opioids currently fill. Your conclusion touched on this with the idea that opioids should only be prescribed when necessary, but I would like to see when that is necessary and if there is anything else that can be done with less risk. Overall I very much enjoyed your article and thought you did a great job discussing this crisis in America.

December 9, 2019 11:59 pm

I think your article brings up a very good point and is relatable to some people. I agree that opioids are a danger for most people, but some people don’t see it that way because they are suffering from so much pain that it is their only resort. Here is another source that I think could help you as well.

November 11, 2019 5:30 am

Opioids may help people but there are other ways to cope with severe pain like using herbal therapies or traditional medicines, that are safer and less addictive. We can see opioid addictions lead people to harm themselves to receive more prescribed opioids. Why use harmful substances to relieve pain when there are safer options and methods that have been used for years to relieve pain. This article speaks about kratom, a herd found in southeast Asia, and how it has pain relieving properties similar to opioids.

October 11, 2019 5:52 pm

I understand your approach to this issue and can definitely relate. Opiods are not so hard to acquire in certain states and therefore a prominent danger for some.

I believe this source will provide you more context to the current reinforcement process on opioids.

Youth Voices is an open publishing and social networking platform for youth. The site is organized by teachers with support from the National Writing Project. Opinions expressed by writers are their own.  See more About Youth VoicesTerms of ServicePrivacy Policy.All work on Youth Voices is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License


Email Call or Text 917-612-3006

Missions on Youth Voices
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x

Log in with your credentials


Forgot your details?

Create Account