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The opioid epidemic is ongoing, but there are more and more treatment options being made available. Because prescription opioids and illicit opiates like heroin are so potent, they can easily lead to a life-threatening overdose. When someone is experiencing an accidental opioid overdose, naloxone can be a lifesaver. Often found under the brand names Narcan or Evzio, Naloxone can reverse an opioid overdose giving individuals the precious time necessary to get to medical professionals.

Given that Ohio has one of the highest opioid overdose death rates in the nation, pharmacies like AccessRX in Toledo, Ohio, have dedicated themselves to making this life-saving medication more accessible. Customers can get this medication without a prescription, and our team provides appropriate education on its use. It’s just one way AccessRX is your community pharmacy.

What Is Naloxone?

example of naloxone for addictionWhen individuals overdose on an opioid such as heroin, fentanyl, oxycodone, hydrocodone, codeine, or morphine, their breathing, and heart rate slows to a deadly level. Naloxone is designed to reverse this. As an opioid antagonist, it attaches to receptors in the brain blocking the effects of opioids. Naloxone for addiction quickly restores normal breathing.

Our team at AccessRX can provide customers with naloxone and educate them in its proper use helping caregivers, concerned loved ones, first responders, and patients are prepared during an emergency.

It is available as an injection or nasal spray, with each taking between 3-5 minutes to work and lasting anywhere from 30-90 minutes. This gives individuals just enough time to find medical support in the case of an overdose. You can recognize the signs of an overdose if someone is displaying the following:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Bluish lips and/or fingertips
  • Pale, clammy skin
  • Awake but unable unresponsive
  • Narrowed or small pupils
  • Limp body

How To Use Naloxone

It’s important to understand how to use this medication because it can be life-saving. There are five steps to consider.

  1. Identify: Opioids suppress the body’s urge to breathe. If someone is unresponsive, they could be experiencing an overdose. Check for a slow heartbeat, shallow breathing, or gasping for breath.
  2. Call 911: Once you’ve identified that someone is having an opioid overdose, call 911 immediately. Provide all the necessary information requested and give a clear, precise location.
  3. CPR or rescue breaths: Giving oxygen can save someone experiencing an overdose. Perform basic CPR, which includes making sure nothing is blocking the individual’s airway, place one hand on the person’s chin, tilt their head back, pinch their nose closed, and administer two slow breaths into their mouth. Continue administering one breath every five seconds until the person starts breathing. If they remain unresponsive after repeating for 30 seconds, you can give naloxone.
  4. Naloxone: Follow the instructions for the form of naloxone you have, whether it’s an injectable or nasal spray. Continue giving rescue breaths after administering naloxone. If the person is unresponsive after three minutes, give a second dose.
  5. Stay until help arrives: It’s important that you stay with the individual until help arrives.

Your pharmacist at AccessRX can guide you through how to use and administer naloxone in greater detail.

Discover What AccessRX Pharmacy Has to Offer

Aside from providing naloxone to the community without a prescription, AccessRX offers comprehensive pharmacy services like immunizations and guidance with over-the-counter medicines for all common ailments. We also offer specialty services like:

  • Medication Disposal: A safe, easy way to get rid of old, expired medications.
  • MTM, or Medication Therapy Management: A program that educates individuals on the various medications.
  • Medications at Discharge: A program that ensures individuals have not just the medications they are prescribed after treatment but also the medications they were taking or needed before addressing other health issues.

No matter what your needs are, our team can help. Reach out to us today at 877.646.9008 to learn more.