What is Naloxone?

Naloxone is a life-saving medication that can stop an opioid overdose, including overdoses from heroin, fentanyl, and prescription opioids. Naloxone is safe and easy to use. It is most often given as a nasal spray.

Naloxone quickly stops an overdose by blocking the effects of opioids. It can restore normal breathing within 2 to 3 minutes in a person whose breath has slowed or stopped because of opioid overdose. More than one dose of naloxone may need to be given when stronger opioids like fentanyl are involved.

Even after administering naloxone to someone overdosing, they will need medical help.

Source: CDC

Be prepared

Learn about and carry naloxone.

Know the signs of overdose:

  • Difficult to wake up
  • Slowed breathing
  • Confusion
  • Blue or pale lips and fingernails

If you notice these signs, call 911 immediately and give naloxone.

Who should carry naloxone?

  • If you or someone you know is at increased risk for opioid overdose, especially those struggling with opioid use disorder (OUD), you should carry naloxone and keep it at home
  • People who are taking high-dose opioid medications (greater or equal to 50 morphine milligram equivalents per day) prescribed by a doctor
  • People who use opioids and benzodiazepines together
  • People who use illicit opioids like heroin should all carry naloxone

Carrying naloxone is no different than carrying an EpiPen® for someone with allergies. It simply provides an extra layer of protection for those at a higher risk for overdose.

Most states have laws that may protect a person who is overdosing or a person who calls for help.

Source: CDC
When in doubt, call 911 and use naloxone.
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