The deathly combination of opioids and benzodiazepines, the class of drugs Xanax, Valium and other drugs fall under, has proven to be popular with partygoers. Where once heroin or ecstasy would have been reigning supreme, partiers are instead turning to prescriptions with relaxing effects. However, Cook County, IL, second-largest county in the nation, has seen over 330 deaths in the last year alone from deaths caused largely by benzodiazepine and opioid mixing. The two together depresses the breathing of the user to a point where they can just stop breathing altogether.
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Nick was a high school junior already well-acquainted with mind-altering substances when a friend introduced him to Xanax. He was immediately smitten.
The prescription anti-anxiety medication affected him differently than booze or weed, he recalled, smothering his inner turmoil so completely he became a fugitive from his own mind.
“Whenever I would take it, I felt very at ease,” said Nick, now 26. “It made me really unproductive. I’d be able to do the school work but at the same time I felt really relaxed. Half the time I’d be forgetting the stuff I was doing.”
Xanax is a benzodiazepine, a class of drugs that includes Valium and Klonopin. They are sedatives that are normally used to relieve anxiety and insomnia, but as they have become more commonly prescribed over the last two decades, abuse and overdoses have followed. Click Here to Continue Reading