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Vertava Health’ Weekly Roundup: 3/10 – 3/16

 3/10/18 – 3/16/18

Some of the most noteworthy events that happened this week in the addiction and mental health community around the world.

How Mommy Drinking Culture Helped Rationalize One Mom’s Alcohol Addiction

With all the jokes about “mommy-juice” and “wine o-clock” circulating around the internet, drinking wine has become increasingly ingrained in mommy-culture. Writer Sarah Cottrell engaged with these memes about mom’s drinking wine to cope with stress almost daily until a yearly checkup with her doctor. When asked how much she drinks during her visit, Cottrell realized she didn’t know how to answer the question because, in truth, she had been drinking wine in a steady stream for years without even realizing it. Below, Sarah shares how mommy drinking culture helped normalize her growing alcohol problem.

Girl Who Gouged Own Eyes Out While On Meth Discusses The Traumatic Experience

Kaylee Muthart was a straight-A student working a part-time job to save money for her own car. However, faced with the stress of an unexpected health crisis, an undiagnosed mental health disorder, a disintegrating relationship and the loss of her job, Kaylee turned to drugs to cope. What started out as a recreational marijuana habit soon turned into a deep meth addiction. After one particularly bad high, Kaylee gouged her eyes out. Two days later, she woke in the hospital, blind. In her own words, Kaylee describers her experience. [middle-callout]

45 Percent Of Deaths Rules Overdoses Could Be Suicides

When a person takes a lethal dose of drugs in order to kill themselves, is it an overdose, a suicide, or both? The answer isn’t quite easy to distinguish, but Mady Ohlman remembers waking up after injecting multiple doses of heroin feeling pissed that she was still alive. Her life as a struggling heroin addict was too painful to bear, but the thought of treatment and recovery seems out of reach. Instead, she felt like suicide seemed like the best option. Now, some researchers are estimating that anywhere between 25 and 45 percent of deaths by overdose that may be actual suicides.

TIME Magazine Wins American Society of Magazine Editors Video Category For Life After Addiction

TIME magazine recently won the prestigious American Society of Magazine Editors Video category for their short documentary featuring the life of two people currently in recovery from opioid addiction. Life After Addiction follows Ron and Carla Hiers; a couple who publicly overdose on a Memphis sidewalk in 2016. The video of their overdose quickly went viral. Since then, both have sought help for their addiction and are living in recovery.

Opioid Epidemic Death Toll Could Be 20 to 35 Percent Higher Than Originally Reported

It’s hard to believe that the opioid crisis could be worse than it is right now, but that may be the case. A new study reveals that the government has been undercounting opioid overdose deaths by 20 percent to 35 percent. To reach this conclusion, University of Virginia professor Christopher Ruhm realized that many coroners were not recording specific drugs when documenting fatal overdoses. By studying the unspecified coroner records, Ruhm was able to reach a correct count of opioid overdoses- which he estimates could be 35 percent higher than what is currently being reported. Read more about Ruhm’s findings.

How One Small Town Has Been Devastated By The Opioid Epidemic

Madison, Indianapolis is a beautiful and small town. It’s also the center of a drug-trafficking triangle connecting Indianapolis, Cincinnati and Louisville. It is one of the cities in America most deeply impacted the opioid epidemic– everyone who lives there has been personally touched by addiction. The people who visit Madison love the place for its art, antique shops and boat racing festivals. But the truth about this small town is much harder to swallow, so it continues to be ignored by the people who live there at the expense of the citizen’s lives.

New Program In Rhode Island Helps Treat Opioid-Addicted Prisoners

The first few times Casey was released from prison, he relapsed. This time, he has a good job, is seeking to further his education and has remained sober. The difference? Casey was offered treatment for his opioid addiction while he was in prison. While highly effective, this approach is unusual- the majority of state prisons don’t provide treatment for opioid addiction to prisoners. Although the program is relatively new, it has cut overdose death rates among released prisoners in half. Read more about this new program in Rhode Island state prisons.