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Families encouraged to talk about drugs before students head back to school

Health officials said the counterfeit drugs are laced with fentanyl, a powerful synthetic opioid.
Health officials said the counterfeit drugs are laced with fentanyl, a powerful synthetic opioid.(DrugAbuse.com)
Published: Aug. 17, 2021 at 10:43 AM CDT
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FARGO, N.D. (Valley News Live) - Before students head back to school and are faced with difficult situations, parents are encouraged to talk to their children about drugs.

The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) says drug overdoses are increasing in North Dakota, and it’s a topic families need to discuss.

From 2019 to 2020, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported a 30 percent increase in drug overdose deaths nationwide, totaling 92,183 fatalities. Nearly 61 percent of those deaths involved opioids like fentanyl.

Fentanyl is 50 times stronger than heroin, and a lethal dose is equal in size to a few grains of salt, according to DEA officials.

In North Dakota, the DEA says it took in about 10,000 pills in 2020. Already in 2021, the DEA reports nearly 8,000 pills have been seized.

“Talk with your family members and warn them about the dangers of taking pills not filled through a legitimate pharmacy and not prescribed to them individually,” says DEA special agent Justin King. “The conversation may just save their life.”

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