The Opioid Epidemic

Who is to blame for the rise of opiate use in the United States?

The Doctors

The Pharmaceutical Companies

The Federal Government

  • Improve Access to Support Services, such as prevention, treatment, and recovery-support organizations aimed at preventing the social, economic, and health consequences associated with opioid addiction. Through this, the HHS is hoping to enable individuals to achieve long-term recovery.
  • Provide Overdose-Reversing Drugs to ensure that more people are adequately equipped to respond to an overdose. In particular, they are increasing the availability of the opioid-curbing medicines with a particular focus on high-risk populations.
  • Strengthen Public Health Data Reporting and collection in order to improve the timeliness of data and to evoke real-time health responses as the opioid epidemic involves. Accurate data is key to cost-effective counter measures.
  • Support Cutting-Edge Research that advances our understanding of pain and addiction. By doing so, we’ll better be able to develop new treatments and help identify effective public health intervention to reduce opioid-related health hazards; and,
  • Advance the Practice of Pain Management to enable access to high-quality, evidence-based pain care and reduce the burden of physical pain for individuals, families, and society. This will also reduce the inappropriate use of opioids and opioid-related harms.

The Drug Dealers

Incarceration

Time to Take Action

  • Educate Yourself. The best way to treat a problem is to first understand it. I hope that this blog entry has, in some way helped to better understand the issue of opioid addiction. Another great resource to further understand addiction is the “Big Book” of Alcoholics Anonymous. While this text pertains more directly to alcoholics, it also does a fantastic job of providing insight into the repetitive cycle of drug addiction.
  • Don’t Judge Others. Seems simple enough, right? Matthew 7 Verse 1 tells us, “Don’t judge others, and God will not judge you.” A barrier to recovery for many is the shame and guilt directed at those struggling with opioid addiction. Please do not hamper someone’s ability to pursue a life of recovery by shaming them. Not only is this ineffective, it can also be deadly in the long-term.
  • Look for The Signs. Look for signs in your loved one such as: increased suicidal comments, impaired visual acuity, dry mouth and nose, marks on veins, emotional distress caused by family and relationship issues, financial instability, legal issues due to drug-related crimes, homelessness, and work or school-related issues.
  • Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Help. Don’t be afraid to ask those around you for help if you are battling an addiction to opioids or any other substances. There is absolutely no shame in receiving help whether that be in the form of inpatient treatment or a local AA Group.
  • Don’t be Afraid to Have Difficult Conversations. Have boldness when speaking with others about your addiction is key. If you happen to see signs and symptoms of opioid abuse present in your loved one, SPEAK UP. The fear of the reaction can disable us from having the hard conversations with those we love.
  • Call Your Senator and Demand Better Treatment Options. Identify and call your local representatives to demand more affordable treatment options. Request better funding for the local programs in your area. If you aren’t sure who your local representatives are, follow this link listed below to identify them and get in contact with them:
    https://www.house.gov/representatives/find-your-representative

Solution

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Stonegate Center

Stonegate Center

Stonegate Center is Texas’ premier faith-based treatment program for men and women seeking freedom from drug and alcohol addiction. Link: stonegatecenter.com