Over the past 20 years, the opioid overdose rate has skyrocketed among women between 30 and 64 years old, according to new analysis released Thursday by the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Since 1999, the opioid overdose rate among women 30 to 64 rose an incredible 492%. That’s the highest leap in any population group. During that time, deaths from drug overdoses of all types increased 260% among women in that same age group. As painkiller addiction and abuse continues to plague people from all backgrounds, it seems no population group is left untouched by the epidemic.
In general, the severity of the domestic opioid crisis really can’t be overstated. As rates continue to climb, new problems continue to compound the crisis, such as the rising rate of fentanyl use, the synthetic opioid that now accounts for nearly half of U.S. overdose deaths.
And the nation’s overdose rates are overall way up, too. The CDC reported that in 2017, the drug overdose death rate rose to a record 72,000 in just one year. That’s a 6.6% national increase in overdose deaths over 2016, an all-time historical record, outpacing causes of death including diabetes, influenza, and suicide. And comparing statistics globally, the U.S. has twice the overdose rate of other wealthy nations.