Recovery From Opioids In Kentucky Coal Town Has Sound Ties To Musical Heritage Of Stringed Instruments
In an Eastern Kentucky region where opioid overdoses are twice the national average, a form of therapy comes from focusing on making and repairing dulcimers and guitars with skilled artisans. News on the crisis is from Georgia, as well.
The New York Times:
In Appalachia, Crafting A Road To Recovery With Dulcimer Strings
The heritage of handcrafted stringed instruments runs deep in this tiny Appalachian village (pop. 770) stretched along the banks of Troublesome Creek. The community has been known as the homeplace of the mountain dulcimer ever since a revered maker, James Edward (“Uncle Ed”) Thomas, pushed a cartload of angelic-sounding dulcimers up and down the creek roads, keeping a chair handy to play tunes for passers-by. Music is the region’s lifeblood: Locals like to say that “you can toss a rock and hit a musician.” But these strong cultural roots have been tested by the scourges that devastated Eastern Kentucky, an early epicenter of the opioid crisis. (Brown, 1/3)
Kaiser Health News:
Effort To Control Opioids In An ER Leaves Some Sickle Cell Patients In Pain
India Hardy has lived with pain since she was a toddler — ranging from dull persistent aches to acute flare-ups that interrupt the flow of her normal life. The pain is from sickle cell disease, a group of genetic conditions that affect about 100,000 people in the U.S., many of them of African or Hispanic descent. Sitting in the afternoon heat on her mom’s porch in Athens, Georgia, Hardy recollected how a recent “crisis” derailed her normal morning routine. (Whitehead, 1/6)