Photo: Alex Wong / Staff /Getty Images

The State of the Union Address is the annual message given by the President of the United States. This year, most attendees wore a purple ribbon to the State of the Union Address. What people want to know now is what the purple ribbon means. Find out the cause behind it right here.

Many people are standing up for different causes by donning a symbolic ribbon. At the State of the Union Address, many senators were seen with a purple ribbon pinned to their clothes. What does the purple ribbon mean?

What Is the Opioid Epidemic?

President Donald Trump delivered his address to the people of the United States last night about the progressive changes in his administration.

Trump said that, during the past year, he brought about a radical change in the job sector, tax reforms, and many more important issues.

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But another problem that was silently addressed by lawmakers was the opioid epidemic. And that’s what the purple ribbon represents.

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, the opioid epidemic is an epidemic in the United States caused by overdosing on or by an addiction to opioids in prescription and non-prescription drugs.

The epidemic is a rapid increase in the intake of opioids, such as oxycodone and hydrocodone (Vicodin). These drugs led to addiction in patients and, in many recent cases, caused death.

The problem is persistent and goes back to the late ’90s when many patients were reassured by pharmaceutical companies that they would not be addicted to drugs that contained the synthetic painkillers. Thus, doctors began to prescribe opioids at a higher rate.

According to reports, more than 90 Americans are dying every day due to an opioid overdose.

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What Do the Records Suggest?

It was estimated that in 2015, more than 33,000 Americans died due to heavy consumption of opioid drugs.

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That same year, the epidemic cost the U.S. government an estimated $504.0 billion. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention director, Thomas Frieden addressed the issue as critical.

In 2016, there were more than 64,000 deaths in the U.S. due to overdose, a recorded all-time high.

Last year, President Donald Trump declared the opioid crisis a public health emergency. The death rate went up to an estimated 67,000 due to overdose.

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Is There a Solution to the Epidemic?

Treatment for addiction is mostly addressed in terms of prevention, rather than tending to those who are already affected.

There are two types of treatments available, behavioral and medical. The former proved to be less effective. In North America, the first safe injection site, which allows addicts to use drugs in an environment where they can immediately receive aid in cases of an overdose, opened in Vancouver.

Here are some tweets by Senator Ed Markey, Senator Jeanne Shaheen, and other senators who addressed the epidemic:

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