You attend a party and often see someone get high and fall off from an overdose. It is a common sight. People casually say, "he OD'ed," and move forward partying. None of the people in the room see it coming, the ill effects of the overdose. Yes, drug overdose is a universal problem. As I write this piece, someone somewhere in the world is going into rehab, suffocating without help, or even dying, all because of an overdose problem.

Overdosing is a silent killer:

It is subtle. Slowly overdosing gets into a person just as the tea from the tea bag seeps into the water. Later, it becomes the master and enslaves them. People use the drug for various reasons. Each one tells a different story. But when it leads to addiction, life takes a different turn.

Anything consumed in excess is invariably harmful!

Any substance of its nature can hurt if consumed beyond the limits. While Opioid remains the most common cause of overdose problem, Alchohol and other forms of drugs are equally responsible. Every year, tens and thousands of lives are lost due to this problem. What is more devastating about the issue is that the families they leave behind also become victims. They had to face all the disgrace and live with embarrassment for the rest of their lives.

Addiction Affects the Family

In many ways, a person's addiction can affect the whole family. In fact, families are the first in line to face the adversarial effects of drug abuse.
Every year, International Overdose Awareness Day is celebrated on 31st August. This year's theme emphasizes reducing the stigma of drug-related deaths and acknowledging the grief felt by families and friends.
So, I decided to dive into some of the coping mechanisms for the families to survive the catastrophe.

How are people bereaved by drug-related death stigmatized?

Discriminated: The bereaved always come under the purview of discrimination by society. The family may suddenly feel left out or socially distanced by the people around them.

Self-Stigma: Families of the victims are not an exception to this belief. They believe they deserve it from society and live with the guilt for the rest of their lives.

Unfortunately, thousands of families live in this world with guilt, facing mortification and prejudice from society. We as a society seldom care about them. It is high time we fix this attitude and try to support them.

Tips to Support Someone Who Lost a Loved One to Overdose

Grieving over the death of a loved one is a great ordeal. And if the person has died from substance abuse, it is much more difficult for them to get over it. As friends, neighbors, or relatives, we can support them in many ways. Here are a few ways to help them:

Make them feel you are there for them: Simple things such as empathizing with them and acknowledging their feelings can significantly improve their mental well-being. Making yourself available for them to talk to you over the phone, spending time with them, and occasionally sending them flowers or cards can help them recover from the loss.

Suggest Professional Help: If any family member finds it hard to get over it, it is always a wise choice to take them to a professional. Psychological counseling or anything of that sort can be beneficial. And nowadays, it is easy to reach out to a psychologist online. With websites such as Yelp and ThreeBestRated®, finding a counselor is one tap away. Try to connect the bereaved with the right counselor.

Encourage Self-Care: Grieving can get in the way of people taking care of themselves. They can forget to get adequate sleep, proper meals, and rest while in crisis. Remind them that self-care is essential for their survival.

Help them out with household chores: Helping to get a funeral arranged or preparing a meal for them when they are not in a situation to cook are simple ways to help them. Also, anything like babysitting or buying things for them could be a constructive measure.

Sometimes, addiction to a substance is not a choice. Maybe those people didn't have anyone to tell them to stop, and perhaps they lacked that care all over their life. Whatever the way it is, It is not our duty to judge them. Humanity is taking care of other people. Let's stop all the stigma surrounding the people who lost their lives and the families suffering from the loss.

Author's Bio: 

Sara Wilson is the Social media specialist for Three Best Rated. She is also an aspiring writer who likes to think out of the box and inspire people through her writing.