Drug deaths involving cocaine use rose by 16% to 371 last year, according to the Office for National Statistics, while overall there were 3,744 deaths from legal and illegal drugs in England and Wales. The ONS said it was the highest number of deaths since comparable records began in 1993.
People in their 40s have overtaken people in their 30s as being the age group with the highest mortality rate from drug misuse, the figures show and, of the deaths, more than two-thirds were due to misuse of drugs, and two-thirds of the deaths were men. The majority of fatalities linked to cocaine use occurred in men aged 30 to 49, the figures show.
Rising levels in the purity of cocaine could be one explanation for the increase, statisticians said.
Deaths linked to heroin or morphine, which account for the majority of drug-related deaths, remained stable last year – with 1,209 compared with 1,201 registered in 2015. The statistics showed there were also rises in deaths involving the powerful painkiller fentanyl – from 34 in 2015 to 58 in 2016, paracetamol – from 197 to 219, and new psychoactive substances (NPS) from 114 to 123.
NPS typically mimic ‘traditional’ drugs such as cocaine, cannabis and ecstasy, and were widely known as ‘legal highs’ before laws criminalising their production, distribution, sale and supply were introduced last year.
Overcoming a drug habit can be achieved through clinical hypnotherapy which uses hypnotic techniques to help remove habits with precision and a total freedom from side effects.
The National Council for Hypnotherapy, the largest not-for-profit profession al organisation for hypnotherapy in the UK, has more than 1,800 qualified hypnotherapists on its directory to help people overcome addictions and bad habits.
The NCH says addictions are bad habits or unwanted behaviours which people feel they cannot control and affects their lives and the lives of those they care about.
“There are several behaviours that affect people’s lives, make them unhappy or cause a risk to their health and the health of those around them,” says the NCH. “If you have an unwanted habit or behaviour, it may often feel as if you are out of control, that there is someone else or something inside of you that is making you do this – a ‘little voice’ that always tells you to do something when you don’t want to do it.”
Reacting to the ONS figures, Niamh Eastwood, executive director of the drugs charity Release, called on the government to fund the forensic testing of drugs, including at nightclubs and music festivals, so that people can be better informed of the purity and content of any pills or powder that they are taking.
And Edward Boyd, managing director of the Centre for Social Justice, believes the government needs to ensure there is effective treatment to help addicts.
“The sad reality is, unless people can afford their own treatment, it is very difficult to get effective treatment and people become stuck in their addictions, which is leading to terrible consequences,” he said.
But says the NCH: “The good news is that you are in control, you can change how you react to certain situations, and you can protect yourself in ways that are healthy and which allow you succeed and grow stronger in body and mind. You just need to know how to change it, and to believe you can.”
The reason why hypnotherapy works so rapidly with bad habits and behaviours is because it works directly with the subconscious, bypassing the critical mind and getting to the root of the issue so that changes can be made.
“The good news is that you are in control, you can change how you react to certain situations, and you can protect yourself in ways that are healthy and which allow you succeed and grow stronger in body and mind. You just need to know how to change it, and to believe you can,” adds the NCH.