In recent years, Kashmir has seen an alarming rise in substance use disorder among youth. At Kashmir’s largest psychiatry hospital, the Institute of Medical Health and Neuroscience (IMHANS), admits about two to five patients every day — a majority among them are fighting with heroin addiction.
One of the largest de-addiction centers in Kashmir also registered a drastic spike in the footfall at its Out Patient Department (OPD) in the last three years. From April 2016 and March 2017, 489 patients visited its OPD, while it rose to 3,622 in the next 12 months — and then to 5,113 in the 12 months after that.
Earlier, The Kashmir Walla reported how since the COVID-19 restrictions were put in place in Kashmir in March 202 — to curb the spread of the virus — several rehabilitation centers shut too, giving a rise to the replaces among the addicts.
In the latest podcast, Sarwat Javaid spoke with a substance disorder patient and a resident doctor at the Institute of Mental Health and Neuroscience (IMHANS), Dr. Marya Zahoor, to understand the scenario as the situation unfolds.