Individuals who have a dependency on Opiates such as Percocet, Vicodin, Oxycontin and others, have a few options for overcoming dependency. If you have a prescription painkiller dependency and what to know what medicines are used in an Opiate treatment program, here is some information that may be useful to you.
According to the Center for Disease Control, prescription painkiller overuse affects the lives of millions of individuals in the U.S. each year with nearly 20,000 deaths attributed to accidental Opiate overdose. It is a common misunderstanding that just because a doctor prescribes it does not mean it is okay to misuse it.
Opiates work on the brain and central nervous system by blocking opioid receptors, that part of the brain that determines sensations of pain and pleasure. When Opiates are taken for long periods of time a physical tolerance to the medication may develop which will result in the individual taking more of the drug to achieve the same results as before. Taking large amounts of Opiates can not only create a drug habit but it can also lead to overdose.
An Opiate treatment program may be found in the form of a residential or nonresidential program and through the use of medical detox or a medical treatment program. Detox is the removal of the chemical toxins that have accumulated in your system from your Opiate use.
A residential Opiate treatment program, such as medical detox may use one or more medications to assist in the flushing of your system. For example in IV therapy medical detox, a medical protocol concoction may be created to detoxify the patient and also control the withdrawal symptoms so that the patient can complete the detox process.
In a nonresidential Opiate treatment program, individuals wanting to quit Opiates would self report to a doctor's office or to a clinic to receive medication to help them. In most cases this method of Opiate treatment uses medicines like Methadone, Suboxone and Subutex. Methadone and Subutex are also opioid receptor blockers and are similar in nature with the exception that Subutex allows for partial opioid receptor blocking and Methadone is a complete opioid receptor blocking. This primary difference in Suboxone makes it less intense for the individual taking it, while Methadone users will experience similar euphoric sensations as an individual on heroin.
There are some drawbacks to taking Methadone and Suboxone. One drawback is that a vast majority of individuals that take these medicines in an Opiate treatment program to withdraw from drugs fail to stop taking them even after the withdrawal symptoms have passed. There seems to be a severe lack of regulation on the limitations surrounding the length of time an individual may take either Methadone or Suboxone and research indicates that some individuals have been taking these for a period of 20 years or longer.
Further, in the case of Suboxone, it is very dangerous to mix the medicine with other drugs and mixing Suboxone with alcohol can be deadly. Individuals who take Methadone and Suboxone for long periods of time are at risk for creating dependency and may be in need of treatment alternative to help them overcome their drug use for good.