Resurgence of meth responsible for record-breaking overdose rate in Oklahoma last year

Apr 2, 2017

Credit Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs Control

Last year, Oklahoma experienced a record number of drug overdoses, reports Oklahoma Watch.

In another gruesome precedent, methamphetamines were the biggest killer, for the first time ever. 2016 saw 952 from overdose deaths, and that number could reach closer to 1,000 as pending autopsies are finalized. The overdose number is almost 100 deaths higher than the previous record of 870 in 2014. Of the deaths, over a third occurred due to methamphetamines.

Meth topped other rural scourges like opioids. However, opioids like hydrocodone and oxycodone remain a big problem in the state as well. When you combine all opioids, they were responsible for more deaths in Oklahoma last year than meth. Officials blame the rise of meth on an opioid crackdown, combined with high rates of mental illness and addiction in the state.