Overdose Deaths Increasing Amidst COVID-19

Overdose Deaths Increasing Amidst COVID-19

Even at a Chicago pain management center, they are finding both doctors and patients affected by the increase in overdoses related to COVID-19. Overdoses have been increasing steadily over the last decade, however, since the COVID-19 pandemic, more and more people have been experiencing overdoses and deaths.

This article will explore the relationship between COVID-19, drug abuse, and the risk of overdose.

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CDC Reports on Overdoses

The CDC has made a public report stating that overdoses have continued to increase amidst COVID-19. Between May 2019 and May 2020, there were more than 80,000 overdoses in the United States.

Statistics show that overdoses have been increasing in alarming numbers over the last few years. However, the CDC report suggests that they spiked when widespread restriction measures were implemented in the United States.

Why COVID-19 Affected Overdose Rates

There are a number of reasons that COVID-19 may have increased the number of overdoses seen in the United States. The implementation of lockdown measures affected nearly every facet of daily life for American citizens. This is especially true for drug users, especially those who are living on the street.

People living on the street have been faced with restricted access to resources, including public health facilities. Lockdown measures make it very difficult for people to seek assistance. Many public housing facilities and soup kitchens have also closed their facilities to the homeless, decreasing their quality of life even more.

This has led to an increase in drug use. The lack of safety facilities also increases the risk of having an overdose and not being able to seek treatment for it.

People who are not homeless have also experienced a difference in the quality of life. These following experiences may make someone more likely to use drugs and therefore have an overdose.


  • Business closures. The COVID-19 crisis has had a massive impact on the economy and caused a number of small businesses to shut down. Well, one might think that the decrease in revenue might make someone less likely to use drugs, the reality is that losing a business causes huge amounts of stress and emotional turmoil. These are both huge contributing factors to drug abuse.
  • Social isolation. When people are isolated, they become more likely to experience anxiety, depression, and mood instability. These are also risk factors for the use of drugs.
  • More free time. The COVID-19 crisis has caused people to stop socializing, and many people are now working from home or not working at all. This increase in free time can contribute to boredom, which can, in turn, contribute to substance abuse.

Overdose sign


As you can see, addiction and overdose rates are increasing because of many of the issues associated with COVID-19. Many of the patients and employees at Chicago pain management center have experienced this, either directly or indirectly through the loss of family members or friends.

If you or a loved one are at risk of using drugs or abusing pain medication, don’t hesitate to reach out to a rehab company.