More Than 600,000 U.S. Parents with Opioid Use Disorder Living With Children

parents fighting with sad teen

An estimated 623,000 U.S. parents with opioid use disorder are living with children, according to a new study. Less than one-third of these parents have received treatment for illicit drug or alcohol use at a specialty facility or doctor’s office, the researchers report in the Annals of Family Medicine.

Treatment rates were even lower among the more than 4 million parents estimated to have other substance use disorders, according to HealthDay.

The study also found that more than one in five parents with opioid use disorder had suicidal thoughts and behavior and nearly 25 percent had serious mental illness, a higher rate of mental health problems than parents with other substance use disorders.

“For parents, the opioid crisis is also a mental health crisis,” said study author Lisa Clemans-Cope of the Urban Institute’s Health Policy Center. “The co-occurrence of opioid use disorder and behaviors that signal suicide risk is a national emergency for families.”

Heroin & the Opioid Epidemic: From Understanding to Action

Heroin and other opioids are ravaging communities across America. Heroin-related deaths increased by more than five times between 2010 and 2017, and drug deaths from fentanyl and other synthetic opioids are seeing a sharp rise as well.


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