Heroin: The Hardest Hit is a powerful documentary focused on the heroin and prescription drug epidemic and its effects on Virginians. It examines the epidemic from all angles with Virginians sharing their personal stories of addiction and overdose, testimonies from parents who lost their children to an overdose, and insights from law enforcement and public health professionals who are working to address the crisis.
If you think your situation with heroin and prescription drugs is unique, you’re right. Everyone experiences addiction differently. However, you may see something familiar in the following stories.
Take a look and see the real effect of heroin and prescription painkiller abuse on Virginia.
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Babies Born Addicted
Using heroin or prescription painkillers throughout pregnancy can lead to serious health problems for both mothers and the newborns – especially when the baby starts to experience opioid withdrawal symptoms.
How Norfolk Became a Hub City
Learn how Norfolk’s centralized location on the east coast, status as a global port city, and major transient military population make it a hotspot for the illegal heroin trade.
Dr. Thompson on Addiction
Dr. Thompson explains why medical professionals consider addiction a disease. Learn about the warning signs of addiction and how early drug use can affect brain development in younger people.
Offering a parent’s perspective, Carolyn tells the story of her daughter, Caitlyn — a promising soccer player who made a tragic journey from injury to pills to heroin.
Hannah’s path to addiction started with experimentation with pain pills in high school, but a family tragedy pushed her drug use into overdrive, which eventually led to heroin dependency.
Drugs in Schools
Drugs are everywhere but parents may not realize how many drugs are available in high schools across Virginia. Part of the solution starts at home by locking up prescription painkillers, but work is underway to set up sobriety and recovery clubs in schools throughout the Commonwealth.
Honesty, a Hanover, VA mom, tells her story of how growing up with minimal adult supervision and hanging out with an older crowd quickly led to a 14-year downward spiral into heroin addiction.
History of the Heroin Epidemic
Virginia’s heroin epidemic may have started with the overprescribing of opioid painkillers over the past few decades, but global forces at play have equal responsibility for spreading the disease of addiction.
How Heroin Gets into Virginia
Between Virginia’s numerous port cities and network of interstate highways, learn why so much heroin is finding its way into every corner of the Commonwealth.
Honesty's Recovery Story
After 14 years of active addiction to heroin, Honesty entered detox and started recovery at The McShin Foundation in Richmond, VA. Learn how a supportive recovery program can helped her become a face and voice of recovery.
Listen to the experiences of numerous heroin and opioid painkiller addicts in recovery to see how there is always hope even in the darkest corners of addiction.
When law enforcement organizations around Winchester realized they couldn’t arrest their way out of the heroin epidemic, they joined forces with treatment and recovery organizations to create the Northern Shenandoah Valley Substance Abuse Coalition. Learn how they are working with the community as a whole to combat opioid abuse.
From high school class president and soccer star to overdose-related coma, hear how a little experimentation with heroin in college quickly turned into a seven-year, almost fatal struggle with opioid addiction for Stas.
Did you know that even small cities like Winchester, VA, are experiencing an epidemic of fatal heroin overdoses? Learn about the “heroin corridor” that stretches from Baltimore, MD to Harrisonburg, VA and see how the illegal heroin trade in big cities like Baltimore can create crime waves and deadly results throughout smaller communities in Virginia.