Medical conditions such as Opioid Use Disorders (OUD) can be difficult not only to manage but to understand. Often people who do not suffer from addiction aren’t empathetic to the reasoning for excessive drug or alcohol use. Some individuals are genetically wired with an addictive personality while others are affected due to life factors. Addiction is a coping mechanism; the more you use, the higher the tolerance you will acquire. What does this mean?
Although each person has a unique situation, the cause of addiction can be attributed to many variables. Opioid dependency is a psychological condition that may require a great deal of medical attention. While some recover quickly, others will need to go through several treatment attempts if they relapse. Yes, it can be an exhausting process! But so worth it in the end. When an individual experiences significantly high rates of relapse, it could mean that the treatment method has failed to diagnose an existing mental health issue. As per usual, it is important to identify the cause of the drug use so that registered clinicians know where to place their focus to prevent further use. If the problem persists, a person is likely to endure a feeling of failure- which doesn’t help the situation!
Individuals tend to develop OUDs because it gives them physical relief and brings out a feeling of euphoria. Once the body begins metabolizing the opioid the sense of euphoria can give way to anxiety and depression which is often addressed by consuming more substances in what is known as a positive feedback loop. The intense happiness promotes an intense craving for drugs, ultimately causing dependence. Once this dependence has reached a certain level, it may escalate from a psychological need to a physical demand. If a person’s system becomes accustomed to a daily intake of the substance, it experiences withdrawal- a set of symptoms that arise due to a sudden decrease in substance use. This is why people who want to cure their addiction must sustain detox under medical supervision: to assure they receive the attention they need during this process.
It is important to provide patients with the proper medical treatment options to effectively treat an OUD. So where do many rehabilitation facilities miss the mark? And how can we improve Opioid treatment programs? INDIVIDUALIZED PLANS- and we cannot stress this enough. Because our situations are all distinct, there is a unique path to sobriety for each of us.
There are currently some medical and detox treatment options that help reverse the physical dependence of Opioids. There are also non-addictive pharmacological therapies available that can help ease the physical cravings and withdrawal symptoms of addiction. When a patient can be drug and craving free, this will allow them to address the underlying emotional conditions or mental health issues they have more effectively.
It is important that we start changing the way we see those who are struggling with addiction. Using social media platforms and advocating for effective medical detoxification and proper mental health treatment will play a big role in educating future generation of addiction. This will also help eliminate the stigma and fear that prevent people from seeking help. If we can increase the availability of effective Opioid treatment programs and raise the quality of mental health care, we can help put an end to the continual Opioid crisis.