The opioid crisis is more widespread in Alberta than many people think. It’s worked its way into our cities, towns, suburbs and homes. Nobody is immune to the opioid crisis. Right now, there could be people in your life who are struggling with opioids. But there is hope. There are things we can all do to make sure those at risk of an overdose are safer.REDUCE YOUR RISK
Source: Alberta Health, Opioids and Substances of Misuse, Alberta Report, 2017 Q2
If you’re using drugs, or are with someone who is using, these are the signs and symptoms to watch out for. If they happen, don’t leave things to chance, call 911 immediately.
Follow the SAVE ME steps to respond to an overdose. If the person must be left unattended at any time, put them in the recovery position (Mouth downward for fluid to drain from airway, chin up to keep throat open, arms and legs locked to stabilize position).
Perform sternal rub (with closed fist, rub knuckles up and down on person’s chest). If the person is unresponsive, call 911 if you haven’t already.
Ensure nothing in the mouth is obstructing the airway.
If this person is not breathing, plug their nose, tilt the head back and provide 1 breath every 5 seconds for 2 minutes. You should see the chest rise with each breath.
If nothing changes, if they are still unresponsive and aren’t adequately breathing, inject Naloxone while you wait for first responders to arrive.
When someone is overdosing from opioids, naloxone—which is free of charge—can be a temporary antidote and reverse an overdose. There is no shame in requesting a kit. You can save a life.
If you use, or know someone who does, or may be around street drugs, you can get a naloxone kit.
Naloxone saves lives. You do not need to present a health card, ID, or prescription. Visit any of the following:
To get naloxone, visit a pharmacy or a walk-in clinic:
For training and setting up a naloxone program visit the Community Based Naloxone ProgramMORE NALOXONE INFO
If you’ve lost someone to an overdose, the grief can be unimaginable. But you do not have to go through it alone. Support is available. Call Health Link at 811 to find help nearby. For information on grief and grieving visit MyHealth.Alberta
Treatment options, information and resources on opioids are also available to patients, family, community agencies and health care professionals through an AHS Opioid Dependency Program as well as treatment clinics for opioid dependence.