Today is recognized as International Overdose Awareness Day (IOAD). This day is the largest yearly initiative aimed at ending overdose, remembering without stigma those who have died from overdose, and acknowledging the grief of the family and friends left behind1.

The theme for this year is “Recognizing those people who go unseen!” Although many people are impacted by overdoses, a significant number of people go unrecognized amid the crisis. This year’s theme aims to recognize family and friends who are grieving the loss of a loved one and extend strength and compassion to those who work in healthcare, support services, and first responders who selflessly assume the role of a lifesaver1.

Learn more about International Overdose Awareness Day here.


What Can You Do?

Show Your Support Use your social media to help end stigma and build awareness and momentum for the day. Use #OverdoseAware and/or #EndOverdose

Attend an Event Research community IOAD events near you and attend with family and friends.

Post a Tribute Remembering those who have lost their lives or have been injured as a result of an overdose is an important part of International Overdose Awareness Day. Click here to post a tribute. 

Educate Yourself on Signs of an Overdose and How to Respond


Signs of an overdose could include2:

  • Non-responsiveness
  • Pinpoint pupils
  • Slow, weak, or no breathing
  • Cold and/or clammy skin
  • Discolored (bluish) skin
  • Choking or gurgling sounds

Call 911 immediately if you suspect someone is overdosing and administer naloxone, a drug that can temporarily reverse the life-threatening effects of an opioid overdose. See video under resources on how to use naloxone.

Get Involved – Invest in Prevention

You can make a difference today for International Overdose Awareness Day by supporting Drug Free America Foundation, Inc. Your donation empowers the creation of impactful educational campaigns, valuable resources, and essential trainings for community members and professionals in our field. You can play a crucial role in the fight against drug abuse and a healthier, addiction-free world!

Click here to invest in prevention today!

Additional Resources and References

SAMHSA National Hotline

Understanding Good Samaritan Laws

DEA One Pill Can Kill Campaign

How to Use Naloxone

The Dangers of Fentanyl and Fentanyl Analogs

Opioid Use Prevention Toolkit