How Many People Get Treatment For Drug Addiction
According to SAMHSA’s National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 22.5 million people aged 12 or older needed treatment for an illicit* drug or alcohol use problem in 2014. Only 4.2 million received any substance use treatment in the same year. Of these, about 2.6 million people received treatment at specialty treatment programs .
*The term “illicit” refers to the use of illegal drugs, including marijuana according to federal law, and misuse of prescription medications.
Pharmacotherapy And The Role Of Social Workers
Social workers who have knowledge of the benefits of pharmacotherapy for SUD can be of significant help to their clients with substance use problems. Social workers are often on the front line of health care. For example, social workers often see clients in their home and are the health care workers who most often work directly with family members. In this capacity social workers observe events and obtain information regarding substance abuse unavailable to other clinicians. Social workers can literally save lives by educating clients about the importance of receiving medication for withdrawal from alcohol and benzodiazepine dependence. Similarly social workers are in a critical position to inform clients who need treatment for alcohol and opioid dependence about the potential benefits of naltrexone and acamprosate for alcohol dependence and naltrexone, buprenorphine, and methadone for opioid dependence.
We provide two illustrations below of specific examples where social workers can help their clients by using their knowledge of how medications are therapeutic in the treatment of substance use disorders.
Risks Of Using Prescription Medications To Treat Addiction
Prescription medications can be a beneficial treatment for addiction. But they also carry risks. Some of the dangers include: 1
- Physical dependence: The use of some prescription medications can result in physical dependence, especially when a person takes more than the prescribed dose. Methadone and Suboxone users may experience withdrawal symptoms when the drugs are abruptly discontinued.
- Side effects: Prescriptions medications can cause side effects, such as difficulty concentrating, nausea, vomiting, and insomnia. Side effects vary from person to person and will depend on the specific medication being used. The effects are often dose-dependent, but they are also affected by the persons physical and mental health. A thorough consultation with the prescribing physician can help those in recovery know what to expect in terms of associated symptoms.
- Potential for overdose: Some addiction medications put users at of overdose, especially when someone takes higher doses than prescribed. Methadone is one drug that can be fatal at high doses, and its use should always be carefully monitored by a physician. Risk of overdose is also high when drugs are mixed with one another.
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Experts Consider Medications To Be The Gold Standard Of Care For Addiction
FDA-approved medications can be used to treat addiction to alcohol, tobacco, and opioidsand theyre especially effective at treating opioid use disorders. Research shows that addiction medications are clinically proven to help prevent overdoses as well as the recurrence of symptoms , while substantially increasing the odds of successful, long-term recovery.
Medications prevent overdoses and support long-term recovery.
Overall, the use of medications reduces the death rate among addicted populations by 50% or more. Many countries, including France and Russia, have made medications widely accessible with impressive results.
MAT is endorsed by the FDA, World Health Organization, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the Surgeon General, the American Medical Association, the American Association of Family Physicians, and many more experts.
The use of medications should be one part of a customized, comprehensive addiction treatment plan. Other elements of the treatment plan may include individual and group psychotherapy, the support of family and other loved ones, peer services , community services , and more. Treatment plans should always be respectful of the patient, taking their unique needs and circumstances into account. Patient-centered treatment approaches have proven very successful.
Talk To Someone About Depression And Other Mental Health Issues
If you don’t have access to a health care professional, call for help with mental health problems.
- For emergency help – Call 911.
- For mental health issues after a disaster – Contact the Disaster Distress Helpline at .
- For veterans experiencing a crisis – Contact the Veterans Crisis Line at , and press 1.
- For substance abuse treatment and mental health referrals – Call the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s National Helpline at .
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Seeking Drug Addiction Help
If you have a loved one who is struggling with drug or alcohol addiction, it can be difficult to watch them. You may be wondering how to help them with their substance abuse issues. They might be ready to quit and wondering where to get help for substance abuse. There are a number of ways to help a drug addict. Here, we will talk about the signs of drug and alcohol use disorders, what you can expect when your loved one is dealing with a substance use disorder, how to handle the difficulties of trying to help them and how having a loved one with a drug or alcohol addiction affects you.
What If My Friend Isnt Responding To My Help
Sometimes, even the best efforts to help a friend arent enough to make them stop.
Find out about treatment resources that are available
Narcotics Anonymous and SMART Recovery are two self-help recovery programs that offer support from other people recovering from drug addictions, address the factors behind drug abuse and help people regain control of their lives. These websites have tons of information about addiction and getting help. If your friend isnt willing to go to a support group, try suggesting a confidential telephone service such as DirectLine.
Dont forget about yourself
When someone you care about is trapped in addiction, it affects you, too. Family Drug Help provides support and information to family members and friends of someone with an addiction.
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How Do They Work
Although drug addiction and abuse impact a persons entire life from their physical health, to their behavior, thoughts, and feelings, addiction starts and ends in the brain. For example, the drug Naltrexone blocks the brains opioid receptors. These receptors are activated in opioid addiction when someone takes an opioid drug. The chemical compounds of the opioids bind to the brains receptors, flooding the body with a euphoric feeling that is incredibly addictive. But taking Naltrexone means the prescription will bind to the brains receptors.
Two things happen as a result of this mechanism. For one thing, the receptors are activated, so the user wont feel intense cravings to use opioids, which is what would happen in an addicted person who was attempting a withdrawal. On the other hand, Naltrexone blocks a person from feeling high if they were to relapse and take an opioid drug. Vivitrol is an injectable, extended-release version of Naltrexone, and is used to treat alcohol addiction. While the tablet form of Naltrexone must be used every day or two, Vivitrol can be injected once per month for the same effects.
Other medications that are used in the fight against opioid addiction include agonist drugs, such as methadone and naloxone. These drugs inhibit the brains opioid receptors from activating. But naloxone takes things a step further. The drug also reverses the effects of opioids, so it can be used to treat an overdose.
Get Help For Drug Addiction From Private Rehab Facilities
If you have health insurance, drug rehab facilities are available to help addicts get better through private rehabilitation programs. However, many people with no health insurance who would like rehab do not find treatment. The best way to get into drug addiction treatment is by calling your county office and asking about resources in your area. They should be able to tell you what resources are available including mental health centers that offer affordable drug addiction treatment, sliding scale rates, scholarships, and grants, etc.
Its not uncommon for people to be nervous about entering drug addiction treatment. You might be worried about how difficult it will be or if youll fit in with the other patients since theyve likely had more experience than you. These concerns arent unfounded but theyre also not an indication that drug addiction treatment isnt right for you. In fact, many people go into rehab feeling the same way only to discover that they have a lot in common with the other patients.
One of the benefits of drug addiction treatment is that youll learn about relapse prevention techniques. These techniques can help you stay sober after you leave rehab. Youll also have access to support groups and counseling which can offer you encouragement and motivation when youre struggling.
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Where To Get Help For Drug Addiction
Many people get the impression that drug addiction treatment is expensive, but this isnt always the case. Depending on where you live, you might be able to find affordable options in your area. There are also a number of ways you can pay for treatment, including:
Private health insurance If your employer provides private health insurance, check with them to see if there are any drug addiction programs offered through their plan. If not, contact your states Department of Health and Human Services to find out what programs are available in your area. You may qualify for free or low-cost treatment.
Medicaid If you are a low-income individual, be sure to ask your doctor if there are any drug addiction treatment programs offered through your states Medicaid plan. Drug addiction treatment is covered by some types of health insurance. There are also ways for addicts with no health insurance to receive free or low-cost care.
County drug program You can call your county office and ask them what resources are available in your area. Many counties have mental health centers that offer affordable drug addiction treatment including counseling, medication, peer support groups, and relapse prevention techniques.
Private rehab facility A lot of private rehabilitation facilities offer sliding scale rates so it never hurts to ask about payment options when inquiring about treatment.
Common Symptoms Of Drug Abuse
Neglecting responsibilities at school, work, or home .
Using drugs under dangerous conditions or taking risks while high, such as driving while on drugs, using dirty needles, or having unprotected sex.
Experiencing legal trouble, such as arrests for disorderly conduct, driving under the influence, or stealing to support a drug habit.
Problems in your relationships, such as fights with your partner or family members, an unhappy boss, or the loss of friends.
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How To Talk To Someone About Their Drug Abuse
Starting a conversation with someone about their drug addiction is never easy, but its important you come from a place of compassion and understanding. Remember, no one sets out to become an addict. Drug abuse is often a misguided attempt to cope with painful issues or mental health problems. Stress tends to fuel addictive behavior, so criticizing, demeaning, or shaming them will only push your loved one away and may even encourage them to seek further comfort in substance abuse.
Discovering someone you love has a drug problem can generate feelings of shock, fear, and anger, especially if its your child or teen whos using. These strong emotions can make communicating with a drug user even more challenging. So, its important to choose a time when youre both calm, sober, and free of distractions to talk. Offer your help and support without being judgmental.
Dont delay. You dont have to wait for your loved one to hit rock bottomto get arrested, lose their job, suffer a medical emergency, or publicly humiliate themselvesto speak out. The earlier an addiction is treated, the better.
Express your concerns honestly. Emphasize that you care for the person and are worried about their well-being. Offer specific examples of your loved ones drug-related behavior that have made you concernedand be honest about your own feelings.
Staging an intervention
Encourage Them To Get Help
As with other diseases, the earlier addiction is treated, the better. However, dont be surprised if youre met with denial or excuses as to why they cant or wont seek treatment. Be persistent about how important it is that they enter treatment for their addiction, but avoid making them feel guilty or ashamed in the process.
Another option is to hold an intervention for your loved one. Although these are often difficult to do, an intervention may be exactly what your loved one needs if theyre deep into their addiction. Consider bringing in an intervention specialist to help you navigate this process.
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What Medications Are Used In Addiction Treatment
Addiction is a chronic, lifelong condition that can completely disrupt a persons life. While it is possible to treat addiction and maintain lifelong sobriety, achieving initial sobriety without outside help and intervention from medical professionals is extremely difficult, and also lessens a persons chances of success. Because addiction is such a chronic and serious disease, treating the disorder requires a holistic, integrated, and multi-pronged approach from a team of qualified medical professionals and therapists.
Therapy, both group and individual, and aftercare support are adequate for addressing the root causes of addiction, and the various mental and emotional issues that trigger drug abuse. Using prescription medications during the detox and rehab timeline can also significantly reduce a persons chances of relapse, and medications can even reverse, prevent, and lessen the severity of withdrawal symptoms. In some cases, psychiatric medications are also needed to alleviate symptoms that can trigger drug or alcohol use in vulnerable patients. While medications can come with certain risks of their own, using them to treat addiction is still a highly effective way to help patients through the often painful withdrawal process and avoid relapse.
What Happens To The Brain When A Person Takes Drugs
Most drugs affect the brain’s “reward circuit,” causing euphoria as well as flooding it with the chemical messenger dopamine. A properly functioning reward system motivates a person to repeat behaviors needed to thrive, such as eating and spending time with loved ones. Surges of dopamine in the reward circuit cause the reinforcement of pleasurable but unhealthy behaviors like taking drugs, leading people to repeat the behavior again and again.
As a person continues to use drugs, the brain adapts by reducing the ability of cells in the reward circuit to respond to it. This reduces the high that the person feels compared to the high they felt when first taking the drugan effect known as tolerance. They might take more of the drug to try and achieve the same high. These brain adaptations often lead to the person becoming less and less able to derive pleasure from other things they once enjoyed, like food, sex, or social activities.
Long-term use also causes changes in other brain chemical systems and circuits as well, affecting functions that include:
Despite being aware of these harmful outcomes, many people who use drugs continue to take them, which is the nature of addiction.
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How To Find Mat Treatment Near Me
American Addiction Centers is a leading provider of MAT at our inpatient and outpatient facilities located across the nation. We also specialize in co-occurring disorders treatment and offer individualized treatment plans that are customized to your specific needs. Our expert, compassionate medical staff and team of professional addiction counselors know what you are going through, and they are qualified to provide the best assistance to support you on your path to recovery.
Medication Assisted Treatment : Find Mat Treatment Near Me
Medication-assisted treatment has helped many people recover from certain types substance use disorders . If you or someone you care about are struggling with alcohol or opioid addiction, you may be interested in learning more about how MAT can help you make progress in recovery.
American Addiction Centers offers medication-assisted treatment at most of our nationwide treatment facilities. Call us at There, our admissions navigators can help guide you through creating a treatment plan, help you explore MAT options at AAC, and verify your insurance coverage over the phone.
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How Drug Abuse And Addiction Develops
Theres a fine line between regular drug use and drug abuse and addiction. Very few drug abusers or addicts are able to recognize when theyve crossed that line. While frequency or the amount of drugs consumed do not necessarily constitute drug abuse or addiction, they can often be indicators of drug-related problems.
If the drug fulfills a valuable need, you may find yourself increasingly relying on it. You may take illegal drugs to calm or energize yourself or make you more confident. You may start abusing prescription drugs to relieve pain, cope with panic attacks, or improve concentration at school or work. If you are using drugs to fill a void in your life, youre more at risk of crossing the line from casual drug use to drug abuse and addiction. To maintain a healthy balance in your life, you need to have positive experiences and feel good about your life without any drug use.
Drug abuse may start as a way to socially connect. People often try drugs for the first time in social situations with friends and acquaintances. A strong desire to fit in to the group can make it feel like doing the drugs with them is the only option.
As drug abuse takes hold, you may miss or frequently be late for work or school, your job performance may progressively deteriorate, and you may start to neglect social or family responsibilities. Your ability to stop using is eventually compromised. What began as a voluntary choice has turned into a physical and psychological need.