It may begin with a car accident, or perhaps injuries on a sports field. A doctor prescribes opioid painkillers like Oxycontin, and that sometimes leads to addiction. Patients may then find themselves buying illicit drugs at a high price. They may even turn to the cheaper and darker substitute, heroin.

Such is the opioid crisis of the 21st century, where powerful new additives to street drugs make it more likely than ever that someone will die, and drug stores struggle to keep up with the demand for over-the-counter antidotes that can save lives.

The opioid crisis will be discussed by a panel of experts as the next program in the Get Well, Stay Well health literacy series presented quarterly by Wilton Library and Western Connecticut Health Network which includes Danbury and Norwalk hospitals.

Painkillers — Routine Use to Dependence? Recovery and Back to Normalcy will be presented Tuesday, Sept. 13, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at Wilton Library, 137 Old Ridgefield Road.

The featured speakers are Dr. Miriam Delphin-Rittmon, commissioner, state Department of Mental Health and Addiction (DMHAS), Robert Bepko, R.Ph., administrative director of pharmacy services for Western Connecticut Health Network comprising Norwalk, Danbury and New Milford hospitals, and Daryl McGraw, director of the Office of Recovery Community Affairs at DMHAS. The program will be moderated by Wilton Library Trustee Dr. Saras Nair, former chairman of the Department of Pathology at Norwalk Hospital.

The presenters will cover the use of opioid painkillers, the potential for unintended abuse, how the drugs work, the recovery process and resources available for help. The program will conclude with a question-and-answer session.

“Through our health literary series, our goal is to provide the community with reliable medical education on a wide range of relevant and timely health topics,” Elaine Tai-Lauria, executive director of Wilton Library, said in a press release..

The series is presented free as a community service. Information: 203-762-6334 or www.wiltonlibrary.org.