Opioid addiction is a serious problem throughout the world. It not only affects the health of the individual but its has serious effects on the social, and economic welfare of all societies. Studies by the National Institute on Drug Abuse show that there was 1.9 million people in the U.S. addicted to prescription opioid pain relievers and 359,000 addicted to heroin in 2010.

The Consequences of Abuse

The consequences to opioid abuse and addiction can be grave. Records show that there has been a large increase in accidental overdose as a result to opioid use in the US. As well as, an increase in blood born diseases such as the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), hepatitis, and other sexually transmitted infections (STIs) due to shared needles and other paraphernalia, and taking part in risky sexual behaviors.

Opioid Addiction

Despite the knowledge of the negative effects opioids have on ones health and other aspects of their lives they will continue its use, because they are addicted. When the effects of opioids wear off they will experience a wide array of uncomfortable, even painful, withdrawal symptoms. Many addicts will try to avoid this withdrawal and continue to take their opioid of choice for comfort.

Kicking the habit on your own is going to be difficult, for many it results in relapse because they lack the medical support and tools needed to maintain their sobriety. Turning to an Opioid Addiction Treatment facility can help you to work through the physical and psychological aspects of your addiction, receive supportive medical care and the opportunity to develop the tools and create a strong support system to maintain your sobriety in your day to day life.

Medication-Assisted Opioid Addiction Treatment

Opioid abuse affects the way that the brain works, causing the individual to develop compulsive drug seeking behaviors. When treating an opioid addiction it is important to focus on the brains changes both short term and long term. When first stopping the use of opioids you will begin to experience a wide array of withdrawal symptoms that can be uncomfortable, even painful. Medication-assisted opioid addiction treatment can help ease craving and other physical symptoms, which can otherwise result in relapse. The medication given to you may become an essential component to the remainder of your treatment, helping you to regain control of your health and life.

How Medications Work To Treat Opioid Addiction

Medications such as methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrex, work through the same receptors as the opioid drug, however they are much safer and less likely to create a dependency. There are three types of medications used in the treatment of opioid addiction; agonists (activates opioid receptors), partial agonists (active opioid receptors and produces a diminished response), and antagonists (block the receptor and interferes with the effects of opioids). The medication you are prescribed will be determined based on your personal needs and other factors in your treatment.

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