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Overdose calls increase amid coronavirus; a Hampton Roads yoga studio steps in

Virginia Beach yoga instructor Annesa Faticoni provides a resource to help addicts in recovery during the COVID-19 pandemic.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — Isolation can be tough for anyone, especially for people dealing with substance abuse.

“People are talking about loneliness or isolation and how that’s triggered them during this quarantine,” said KTMA Yoga instructor Annesa Faticoni.

Faticoni has used one of her passions to teach others how to cope with addiction.

“I’m proud to say I’m a recovering addict, in that I addressed it, I continue to address it, and I want to help other people,” she said.

“Welcome to the 530 Y12SR yoga,” greets Faticoni during her 12-step recovery yoga class. “Open to anyone and everyone dealing with their own addictive behavior or affected by the addicted behavior of others.”

She explained, “We’re hoping to bridge that gap to where they don’t feel alone. They can log on, they can Zoom in and take an hour of yoga and have a meeting and at least look forward to that.”

On Wednesday, Governor Ralph Northam announced substance abuse is becoming an issue.

“We heard from localities around the Commonwealth that they're seeing an increase in the number of drug overdoses in our communities,” Northam said.

We checked in with Virginia Beach emergency medical services division Chief Bruce Nedelka about what they are experiencing. “We believe we’re seeing an increase in call volume for overdoses,” he said.

Nedelka said this is a good message for people to understand this pandemic is impacting everyone in different ways.

Faticoni is one resource trying to make a difference. She has increased her yoga recovery classes from once a week to five times a week.

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