Dr. Oz discusses changing face of addiction

- Dr. Mehmet Oz, host of "The Dr. Oz Show" was in the District over the weekend for a "Unite to Face Addiction" rally.

The statistics are alarming. In the U.S., one in three American households has been touched by addiction. Drugs are becoming more available and more dangerous and year after year, children are being exposed to drugs at younger ages.

"It's not just someone else is having a drug problem. When one in three families has an issue, we all have to deal with it. Most of us have no idea it's happening right now under our notices in the best neighborhoods out there," Oz said.

The face of addiction has changed over the years, Oz says. "The classic story of someone addicted is a construction worker – meaningfully and gainfully employed – a couple kids, married, goes to church. He's got two weeks of back pain, he's put on narcotics, the next thing you know it's hard to get off of them. Then because heroin is so much cheaper then opioids, you slip down that slope and you can't get back up again."

"I actually think there should be a national day of conversation where we talk to our kids about the ten things you would be dumb not to know about drugs."

"Not that you're accusing anyone of having problem with it," Oz said. "We have family histories. We have pre dispositions to it. Addiction is a disease of the mind. We can get ahead of this if we're open about it."

Prevention:

- Teens are not educated about the risks of addiction
- Parents don't know how to talk with their kids about alcohol and other drugs
- Alcohol and other drugs are becoming more available and more lethal, and our children are being exposed at younger ages every year

Early Intervention:

- 90% of the 22 million+ suffering from addiction today began using during adolescence
- Understanding that addiction is a health problem, not a crime, changes everything
- Someone – often a young person – dies from alcohol or other drugs every 4 minutes in America.

Treatment and Recovery:

- Only 10% of people needing treatment for addiction receive it
- Roughly 85 million people have had their lives turned upside down by addiction
- 8.3 million children live in a household with a parent in need of treatment. None of these kids asked for that

Dr. Oz takes a look at unconventional pain therapy in a past episode: http://www.doctoroz.com/episode/cold-therapy-does-it-work-oz-tests-it-out

For more information on addicition visit: https://www.facebook.com/UniteToFaceAddiction

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