In order to truly make a positive impact in our communities to prevent the misuse and abuse of opioids/painkillers (along with other prescription medication), we all have to be involved. We all need to take the necessary steps to help our neighbors and prevent more people from becoming addicted.
Please identify what you can do to make a difference:
- Lock up your medication, store them safely in your house and dispose of them properly.
- Do not share medication with family or friends.
- Ask your doctor about medication when it is prescribed. Ask what it is and if it is addictive. Share any addiction history as it pertains to yourself or your family members.
- Share the website (www.bryanprevention.com) with everyone you know and follow the project on Facebook and Twitter.
- Keep up on local, state, and federal legislation and vote in support of laws and ordinances that work to prevent opioid misuse/abuse and support the treatment of those with addictions.
- Do what you can to discourage the stigma around addiction (and mental illness):
- Educate others that addiction is a chronic brain disease, not a matter of willpower.
- Be aware of how you talk about people with substance-use disorders.
- Support the development of additional behavioral health services in our community, including Narcotics Anonymous groups.
- Educate yourself on the dangers of opioids and other prescriptions, along with proper storage and disposal methods so you can educate your children.
- Talk to your youth about the dangers of opioids and other prescription drugs.
- Let them know that you do not approve of the misuse of these drugs.
- Support universal, evidenced-based drug-prevention programs focusing on skill building in middle school, as well as youth groups such as Boy and Girl Scouts, parks and recreation organizations, and faith-based groups.
- Talk to your patients about the dangers of the medications that you are prescribing.
- Follow the CDC guidelines when prescribing opioids.
- Undergo training that specifically pertains to addiction and how drugs affect the brain.
- Check the PDMP every time you prescribe an opioid.
- Post in your office(s) and distribute materials to your patients that outline the dangers of opioids and other prescription drugs (these materials can be provided by the project).
- Become involved in the Bryan County Opioid Prevention Project Workgroup.
- Review and revise drug-use policies to include the misuse of prescription drugs.
- Educate your employees about the dangers of opioids and prescription drugs.
- Post materials that outline the dangers of opioids and other prescription drugs in prominent locations for employees and customers to utilize resources if needed.
- Get training for yourself and any other supervisors/managers on the impact of opioid/prescription drug misuse/abuse to your business and what you can do about it.
- Support universal, evidenced-based drug-prevention programs in middle school focusing on skill building and that has an opioid/prescription drug component.
- Let parents and students know that you stand by them and offer support if they need it.
- Educate all school personnel (teachers, coaches, counselors, social workers, nurses, etc.) about the risk factors and dangers of opioids/prescription drugs misuse/abuse, and how to support youth and assist with getting youth and parents resources they need.
- Provide youth and parents information about the dangers of opioids and other prescription drugs each year when a youth signs up for sports or gets their sports physical.
- Provide youth and parents information through the nurse’s office.
- Encourage parents and students to ask healthcare professionals for non-narcotic painkillers.
What the Bryan County Opioid Prevention Project can do for you:
- Provide youth prevention education focused on opioid misuse prevention – It’s (Not) About Drugs session (60-90 minutes) for grades 6th through 12th from Overdose Lifeline.
- Provide parent opioid awareness education sessions – 2 hour session to any size group of parents.
- Support for businesses and employers to encourage the development of appropriate policies regarding opioids and prescription drug use and providing opioid awareness education sessions for employees/management/HR.
- Provide opioid awareness education training for all community groups.
- Work with any community partner to offer a community awareness event in Bryan County and supply all the informational materials needed for an event. (The project can often assist with some supplies for the event but is not able to pay for food.)
- If you have another idea, contact us so we can try to support any community effort.
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