Substance Use - Opioids
Opioid Use Among Older Adults
There is a growing population of older adults developing opioid use disorder (OUD). In addition to this, there are older adults with longstanding OUD (including people who use illicit opioids) who require treatment for their addiction and related health problems.
In Canada, 43.9% of adults over 55 years of age have used a prescription opioid and 1.1% of that group have done so daily (or almost daily) in the last year (Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction, 2018).
According to the World Health Organization, people over the age of 50 accounted for 39% of deaths from drug use disorders in 2015. Of those deaths in older adults (age 65 and over), approximately 75% were linked to the use of opioids (Degenhardt & Hall, 2012; UNODC, 2018).
Are you a health care professional?
Learn about our clinical guidelines on opioid use to best support older adults in your care.
Discover additional tools and resources to support your clients here.
Are you an older adult or care partner?
Access helpful tools and resources here.