Page 5 - OCT2021
P. 5

 October 2021 NEWFOUNDLAKELIFE.COM Page 5 Community
Zero Drug Overdose Deaths in Hebron New Hampshire
By suzanne l. thistle, ma, mlaDC
When you spend time in the quiet bedroom town of He- bron, New Hampshire, you feel ease and comfort. This beauti- ful community adorns antique homes surrounding the village green, where the citizens enjoy summer bands and barbeques. “Most of the 625 full-time res- idents live on Newfound Lake, and only approximately 50 are children,” states Travis Austin, Hebron’s Police Chief.
Hebron citizens were lucky enough to evade having one of their residents be part of the 93,000 drug overdose deaths in the United States during 2020. But, I have to say that I was curious as to why. What makes this town immune to the opiate crisis? According to Lieutenant Patti Oakley, A-EMT, LPN, CDP, “the fire department may only get two calls a year for an alcohol or drug-related inci- dent.”
After talking with Chief Aus- tin and Lieutenant Oakley, I re- alized how this picturesque town could escape the tragedies of the addiction crisis. One of the protective factors for Hebron residents may be that the me- dian age is 65. If you look at the statistics, most overdose deaths don’t occur in this age group. Of course, there may be other rea-
sons why people who reside in Hebron escape substance misuse tragedies, but this is the one that stood out to me.
According to the New Hamp- shire Drug Initiative Program, four hundred and thirteen peo- ple died of a drug overdose in New Hampshire in 2020. As of May 14, 2021, three deaths were still pending toxicology. Nine deaths happened in Graf- ton County: Hanover, Lebanon, Enfield, Littleton, Bristol, and Bridgewater. In 2019, NH also lost four hundred and fifteen people from drug overdoses. In both years, most victims were young adults between the ages of 20 and 39.
Sixty-three people received Narcan (an opiate overdose re- versal drug) from emergency services in Grafton County during 2020, Bristol, Alexan- dria, Enfield, Lebanon, Groton, Plymouth, Ashland, Wentworth, Rumney, Campton, Thornton, Warren, Woodstock, Haverhill, Lincoln, Lyman, Littleton, Beth- lehem, and Woodstock. Narcan used in these towns was mainly administered to young adults between the ages of 20 and 39. Fentanyl by itself or laced with other drugs was the culprit in most of the deaths.
Why are the people in their later stages of life shielded from this atrocity? People in their six-
ties have always had access to the same substances as young people. So, why do they choose not to take them or refrain from abusing them? Do the people of Hebron care about their town and their neighbors so much that they’re willing to go the extra mile to protect them?
THE Traveler’s
Why is Hebron so isolated from this misfortune since alcohol and other drug casualties affect different ages, economic back- grounds, and ethnic groups?
Instead of finding the reasons people don’t overdose, finding out how individuals can help
seems more appropriate. So, I
invite the seniors of Hebron to share their wisdom about not drinking excessively or taking other drugs with our school sys- tems, correction institutions, and local children. You, our older generation, are the key to un- locking the truth about longevity and living a peaceful life.
Cardigan Mountain SoapWorks
Opening In October
A place to site back and relax from the world
Good Food
Good Conversation
Your Favorite Beverage including
A Selection of Craft Beers, Wine and Spirits
Tom Fitzpatrick
gentle handmade soaps • aromatherapy mist herbal teas • personal care products • bulk spices
464 Mt. Cardigan Rd, Alexandria Hours: Wednesday-Sunday 11am-4pm
WE HAVE SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE: Household Items Assorted Tables • Used Tools • Hardware • Doors & Windows Potted Plants: Hostas, Beebalm, Rhubarb • Camp Firewood • Yard-tiques SORRY NO FIREARMS - STOP. BUY AND PICK MY BARN Saturdays or by Appointment or by Chance 603-530-2752 • 560 N. Main St., Bristol, NH 03222

   3   4   5   6   7