I have worn glasses since my math teacher noticed my inability to see the board in Algebra class in the 7th grade. It turned out that I had bad, irregular astigmatism as well as near sightedness—and it has only gotten worse since—with a minor eye-injury in my early adulthood, chronically dry eyes, and steadily deteriorating vision at distance. As a professional writer by trade, lacking the medical background or academic acumen for understanding my vision-related options, glasses had simply become a given facet of my life, and one that I’d never thought to question before. For me, it had always been a choice between glasses and eye-surgery, shutting me off from the significant benefits of lensing options. Only recently, some thirty years after my first pair of glasses, have I finally gotten around to trying scleral contact lenses—amazed now by the freedom they offer, and baffled that it took me so long to give them a try.
Opioid drug use has risen steadily over the past two decades at an alarming rate. The steady influx and over-prescription of opioid pain medicines has led to a spike in addiction—fueling a marked resurgence of heroine use, which is a closely related and far cheaper replacement for prescribed pills. Now, new, even more potent synthetic opioid derivatives, such as Fentanyl and Carfentanil, are cut into heroine to increase chances of addiction and overdose. Correspondingly, opioid overdoses have now become one of the leading causes of death in the United States, affecting individuals from all races and socio-economic backgrounds, with trends showing no sign of it stopping.