Helping Loved Ones Get Into Treatment for Opioid Addiction
Written By: Jackie Cortez ( thepreventioncoalition.org )
The opioid crisis is spreading far and wide across America. It is showing up everywhere from big cities and upper class suburbs to small town USA. It isn’t just affecting random strangers anymore.
More and more associates, coworkers, friends, and even family members are getting involved with these dangerous drugs. Almost one hundred people are dying everyday from from overdosing on opioids.
The damage these drugs are doing to families and communities is hitting home harder than ever, but there is hope. There are ways to help and get those who need it into much needed Opioid Addiction Treatment.
Forms Of Opioid Addiction
Opioid drugs come in several different forms, from doctor prescribed pain medications to heroin. How did this epidemic happen? How did our friends and family get caught up in drug abuse? Several doctors prescribed these powerful drugs for pain management to their patients.
These drugs are extremely addictive. Over time the body builds up a tolerance requiring more for the same effect. After becoming addicted, some people seek out less expensive and often illegal forms of opiates such as heroin to satisfy their addiction.
You may think you’re immune to addiction, but anyone who is prescribed opiates for pain management has a risk of becoming addicted – even you. The longer you are prescribed the medication, the higher your risk of addiction.
If you have a spouse, family member, or friend who is using opiates for pain management after surgery, injury, or other legitimate reason, make sure you check on them frequently and talk with them.
If they have young children suggest that they lock up their medication so that their children or children’s friends do not access and abuse the prescriptions. Watch for signs of mood swings, anxiety, poor coordination and decision making. These could be warning signs of an Opioid Addiction.
Prescribed Opioids To Addiction
Check to make sure they are taking the prescribed doses and not abusing them. If you suspect or are concerned about someone abusing the medication, it doesn’t hurt to keep an eye on the quantity of pills being consumed.
Make sure the prescription isn’t running out too quickly. Be especially alert for signs of an overdose. Signs may include a weak heart rate and shallow breathing, blue lips and fingernails, limp body, or pale face. Call emergency services immediately if any of these signs are present.
If you suspect a friend or loved one to be abusing opiates it’s important to get them help as soon as possible. Luckily there are treatment options out there. The first step is to talk to your doctor. They may be able to prescribe a different medication that can help.
There are three main medications available to treat the symptoms of withdrawal and get an addict to stop using the substance. Methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone are used as part of a medication-assisted therapy program that has proven to be effective in patient recover.
After the initial detox it is critical to follow up with counseling to make sure the patient does not enter into a relapse. Counseling and treatment options are available and some treatments are even available in your doctor’s office.
Opioid Addiction Treatment
Although medications affect people differently, nobody is immune from the effects of a highly addictive substance. Many associate a false sense of security due to the fact that opiates are often prescribed by doctors.
The fact that many households contain a form of prescription opiates make them available for abuse by children and young teens as well.
It is important to watch out for our friends and family that may be susceptible to opiate addiction. There are several warning signs that people may inhibit once they become addicted to and start abusing these dangerous drugs.
If you suspect a loved one may be falling victim to this national crisis, talk with them and get them help immediately. There is help available, and it’s never too late. Medications and counseling have proven to be effective in the fight against opioid addiction, and helps lead down to a successful road to recovery.
We would like to thank Jackie Cortez from, The Prevention Coalition.
She has dedicated her life to fighting Addiction.
We appreciate her articles.
Please check out her website.
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