Opioid Abuse and What It’s Doing to You or Someone You Know

It’s not easy to stand by and watch a relative or loved one suffer from drug addiction. This is especially true when you’re looking at statistics from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) like “44 people die every day in the United States from overdose of prescription painkillers.” Gaining true insights into the reality of the effects opioids have on the body can be a good starting point to tackling treatment.

Opioid Abuse

The term opioid covers prescription drugs, such as hydrocodone, oxycodone, morphine, and codeine, and illegal street drugs such as heroin.

Oftentimes opioid abuse originates from an injury that requires surgery and doctor- prescribed pain killers, resulting in an individual’s overuse of the medication, sometimes followed by addiction. SAMHSA reports “50.5% of people who misused prescription painkillers got them from a friend or relative for free, and 22.1% got them from a doctor.” With opiates so readily available and seemingly cost free, more than 1.9 million Americans qualified for having a prescription painkiller use disorder, and the consequences don’t take long to affect the user.

Find Out About the Potentially Fatal Effects

Opioid abuse causes the body to become dependent on the substance, leaving the individual to suffer through extremely uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms. The mental and physical need for the medication is hard to break. Headaches, insomnia, body sweats, tremors and immense pain are just a few side effects. Many people who use heroin tend to inject it, thus placing these users at higher risk for contracting HIV or Hepatitis C. Heroin users may exhibit the following symptoms: drowsiness, respiratory depression, constricted pupils, nausea, and dry mouth. Individuals suffering from substance abuse can also face heart, kidney and liver issues.  Unfortunately, many cases of opioid abuse end in death due to overdose or a related issue.

Treatment for Opioid Abuse

Addiction is a disease, just like diabetes and cancer are disease. Drugs change how the brain works.  These brain changes can last for a long time and can cause problems like mood swings, memory loss, even trouble thinking and making decision.

At Advantage Mental Health we can help you manage and over come your addiction through medication based treatment and counseling.  Trained medical professionals create custom recovery plans for patients with a mindful mix of individual therapy sessions, group therapy and controlled medication. Buprenorphine may be administered to lessen symptoms and control cravings under the careful supervision of a provider, weekly at first and then monthly; providers at AMHC are licensed and have received special training to prescribe buprenorphine. If you or a loved one is ready to seek help for an addiction contact Advantage Mental Health Center today and find the support you need.