Opioids are problematic little drugs, aren’t they? Since these painkillers first arrived on the medical scene a few centuries ago, it seems that humans have been struggling to overcome a seemingly instinctive attachment. After all, each of us dreams of a moment where we could snuff out our pain, whether it’s caused by menstrual cramps, an injured knee, or chronic back problems. While these drugs can certainly benefit millions of people, the problem is that opioids are so addictive, triggering attachments with the drop of a hat. However, according to one report from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), another problem with opioids may be improper dosage and subsequent confusion from patients. Let’s take a closer look and find out.
Threefold Increase in a Risk for Overdosing
According to a recent study conducted at Kaiser Permanente Colorado, the greater the variability between opioid doses, the higher the chance a patient has of becoming an addict (about a threefold increase of a risk, to be exact). Ultimately, the research team confirmed that patients undergoing long-term pain management therapy are used to consuming opioids of different potencies and changing doctors, factors which could add to this risk.
However, the greatest danger lies in abrupt changes in dosages. For example, a patient who suddenly stops taking medication only to kickstart that process by taking a higher-dose medication later will suffer from a higher risk of developing opioid use disorder than a patient who follows a straight-course regimen.
What Can Doctors Do?
As the study suggests, doctors should take the following actions to reduce the risk for opioid use disorder among patients in pain management therapy:
- Minimize the doses of opioids during therapy
- Closely monitor doses
- Cautiously implement new guidelines for the prescribing of opioids
Seeking Treatment for Opioid Use Disorder
Opioid use disorder is easily one of the most terrifying substance use disorders on the planet, mostly because opioid addiction partially stems from a large number of drugs that are legally regulated by the federal government. For decades, our country has suffered beneath the weight of dangerous synthetics and legal painkillers, and millions of Americans have suffered from addiction throughout the 20 years the crisis has been brewing. However, you can make the right decision by taking a stand against your addiction and regaining your health and happiness.
If you are suffering from a severe case of drug addiction, or have a friend or loved one who is coping with this illness, get in touch with Asana Recovery today. Our professional team of counselors and healthcare experts will help you endure the painful process of opioid withdrawal and detox and guide you along the rocky road of rehabilitation. Soon enough, you will experience a faster and much more efficient recovery.
If you want to find out more about our residential treatment or supervised detoxification/withdrawal programs or enroll in one of these programs today, we are ready and waiting to speak with you at your leisure and your disclosure. Call Asana now at (949) 438-4504 to learn how you can overcome your mental illness and take an extra step toward becoming a healthier person.