The Buzz | The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse

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Welcome to The Buzz—The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse's online conversation about addiction and substance use.

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98% Pure Meth background

Just last week, The New York Times reported that United States border agents are seizing “10 to 20 times the amounts [of this drug] they did a decade ago.” The drug in question: methamphetamine. As our national consciousness has been  laser-focused  on the opioid epidemic, hundreds of thousands of people are struggling with addiction to this drug, commonly referred to as “meth,” “ice,” “crank,” “crystal,” “fire,” “glass,” or “speed.”

Search for fraud

While we wish it weren’t so, there is no easy cure for opioid addiction. Unfortunately, in the face of our nation’s opioid epidemic, many opportunistic entities have popped up trying to peddle products that offer a quick fix to this chronic disease. Following a rise in the online advertising of fraudulent “miracle cures” for opioid withdrawal and addiction, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) partnered with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to put these misleading and manipulative marketers on notice. To learn more, we spoke with Mamie Kresses, a senior attorney in the FTC’s Division of Advertising Practices.

Image of actual kratom pills with a faux prescription logo.

“Natural,” “mild and pleasant,” “a solution for opioid addiction;” these are a few of the ways the substance kratom has been described in the media. Yet, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has long warned users about the “deadly risks” associated with consuming this herb, and just today issued a statement noting it should be treated no less seriously than other addictive opioids. So, what is kratom, why is it growing in popularity and what risks does it pose to users?

Candle flame light at night with abstract candles background

In our most recent poll, nearly 75 percent of participants voted that they think the number of deaths caused by drug overdoses in 2017 outnumbered those caused by guns or car crashes. While the exact figures have not yet been confirmed, it appears our readers will be proven right. 

Mom, dad, son and daughter watch TV on a couch

In addition to making the headlines of major newspapers from across the country, addiction is also gaining traction on the silver screen. This season, many of our favorite TV shows are addressing substance use disorders and risky drinking or drug use. However, they often sacrifice precision for plot points. Here, we’ve provided some suggested reading to accompany This Is Us, Grown-ish and 13 Reasons Why -- three of television’s most talked about shows -- to help set the record straight.

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