1: Look for the signs
Opioid overdose is common among those who use heroin, oxycodone, hydrocodone, methadone, fentanyl, and morphine.
If an overdose is suspected, grind knuckles into their sternum (breastbone).
2: Call 911
Just say “someone is unresponsive and not breathing.”
Be sure to give a specific address and description of your location.
3: Give naloxone
Naloxone is appropriate for ALL opioid overdoses, including fentanyl.
- Lay the person on their back.
- Hold naloxone spray with your thumb on the red plunger.
- Insert the nozzle in one nostril.
- Press the plunger firmly to give the person a dose.
- If they do not respond within 2-3 minutes, give a second dose.
- With fentanyl overdoses, multiple doses may be required.
- The goal of naloxone is to restore breathing, not complete arousal.
4: Give CPR
Continue to provide resuscitation while naloxone takes effect.
- Clear their mouth and throat of obstructions.
- Tilt their head back and pinch their nose closed.
- Place CPR mask over their mouth and nose.
- Blow slowly into the CPR mask valve.
- Watch for the person’s chest (not the stomach) to rise.
- Remove your mouth, allowing them to exhale.
- Repeat one breath every 5 seconds.
- Press hard and fast on the center of their chest.
- Keep your arms extended.
Most people return to spontaneous breathing in 2-3 minutes.
- Naloxone effects may be short and overdose symptoms may return.
- Get them to an emergency department as quickly as possible.
- If naloxone doesn’t work, they most are not overdosing on an opioid.