Opioid Statistics & Information

One of the best ways to join the fight against drug misuse and overdose in our community is to be informed. Placer-Nevada County Rx Drug Safety Coalition seeks to make our community members aware of the serious threat that opioids can pose to public health and provide information about who is at risk. Please access any of the information below to do your part in learning about opioids.

Fast Facts

Opioids are often prescribed to treat pain, and include the following medications.

  • Hydrocodone (Vicodin®)
  • Oxycodone (OxyContin®, Percocet®)
  • Oxymorphone (Opana®)
  • Morphine (Kadian®, Avinza®)
  • Codeine
  • Fentanyl
  • Hydromorphone
  • Tapentadol
  • Methadone

Recently, the use of opioids to treat non-chronic, non-severe pain, has become more widespread, leading to increased risk of abuse, addiction, and overdose. Even when used correctly, opioids pose several risks including side effects such as:

  • Tolerance—meaning you might need to take more of the medication for the same pain relief
  • Physical dependence—meaning you have symptoms of withdrawal when the medication is stopped
  • Increased sensitivity to pain
  • Constipation
  • Nausea, vomiting, and dry mouth
  • Sleepiness and dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Depression
  • Low levels of testosterone that can result in lower sex drive, energy, and strength
  • Itching and sweating

You can talk to your physician about your opioid use and explore alternative options to pain management.

Who is affected by opioid misuse?

The opioid epidemic does not discriminate across demographic groups, and it is a public health threat to the residents of Placer and Nevada Counties. 

  • According to CDC, "the percentage of all opioid-involved overdose deaths involving synthetic opioids increased from 2015 to 2017 across all racial/ethnic age groups in each metropolitan area category."
  • According to this article, opioid related deaths are increased among those recently released from prison, those with multiple prescriptions across pharmacies, and those who took opioids with other scheduled medications.
  • SAMHSA data suggests that prescription opioid misuse is most often initiated during a person's early to late 20s.
  • According to this study, opioid use and misuse has increased among pregnant women.
  • Finally, the CDC notes "that some of the greatest increases [in heroin use] have occurred in demographic groups with historically low rates of heroin use, including women, the privately insured, and people with higher incomes."

Action Team Resources: