People around the world were left shocked at the death of Glee star Cory Monteith earlier this month from a drug overdose. The 31 year old actor was found dead in his hotel room in Vancouver and a postmortem showed that he had died from an overdose of heroin and alcohol.
Cory had struggled with addiction since his early teens and had checked himself into rehab for treatment just a few months previously.
What shocked most people was the fact that Cory did not look like a stereotypical drug user. But the reality is that there is no stereotypical ‘look’ for an addict and drugs and alcohol can affect people of all ages and backgrounds.
Anyone can struggle from an addiction.
If you or anyone you know has been taking drugs it is important to know the dangers associated with them. You can read more about the dangers associated with different types of drugs in our A-Z of Drugs.
Concerned about your drug use?
If you are worried about yourself or someone you know who has been taking drugs, remember that there is always help and support out there. You may feel that now is the time to get help for your drug use. There are many treatment options available to you when you decide that you are ready to get help for drug use.
Not all types of treatment are the same and it's important that you talk to your doctor or the support services in your area to find out which treatment is best for you. Never be afraid or embarrassed to ask for help or support- there are people and services available specifically to help you beat addiction.
If you aren't able to stop taking drugs yet, there is still treatment available to improve your health and reduce the harm that drugs are doing to you. Or you might need treatment to prevent your drug use from getting worse: talk to the support services in your area for advice and information.
If you are finding it difficult to stop taking drugs while living at home, then it may help to have the option of going into hospital, a residential rehab or to a clinic that will offer a supportive atmosphere and treatment. Ask your doctor or the support services in your area about what option is most suitable for you and where the nearest hospital, residential rehab or clinic for addiction treatment is.
Don't be afraid to ask for ongoing support after your addiction treatment is finished. It's important to have the support of friends and family. A doctor, support service or counsellor can provide aftercare that will help keep you off drugs and deal with any other problems you might have. It can also help to join a support group such as Narcotics Anonymous.
To find a support service near you check out the Drugs.ie website which has information on where to find help in Ireland for a range of different addictions.