News Anchor/Reporter WMUR
MANCHESTER, N.H. —
Newly released figures show that 2022 was the worst year for overdose deaths in New Hampshire since 2017. State officials said there were 434 confirmed overdose deaths, with another 39 deaths still pending toxicology test results. In every overdose death, fentanyl was involved. There have been more than 400 overdose deaths every year in New Hampshire for the past nine years.
People who are recovering from substance misuse say there are different strategies that could help, ranging from setting up recovery centers for the person addicted and their families, increasing awareness about available recovery treatments, and providing medical and emotional support for those going through withdrawal.
“Obviously, the magic solution would be no drugs, no fentanyl, but that’s just not going to happen,” said Jacque Ingersoll, of Farnum Center. Some said it’s important to focus on what motivates people who are addicted to drugs.
“It’s not death that scares the opioid addict. It’s the pain of going through withdrawal,” said Keith Howard, executive director at Hope for New Hampshire Recovery. Howard, who has been in long-form recovery for 15 years, said the state can do better. “All of us are trying our best, but there’s so much more that needs to be done,” he said. Alexander said she got into drugs when she was 10 because her father was addicted. She hopes to one day open a recovery center for families. “Helping more than just the person that’s struggling is key,” she said. Officials said the presence of fentanyl and other powerful drugs has made substance misuse even more dangerous than it was 10 to 15 years ago.