Opioid Use in California and Orange County
In 2017, the National Institute on Drug Abuse reported that there were 2,199 overdose deaths due to opioid use in California. The high number of deaths was attributed to the overdose of prescription opioids with 1,169 deaths in 2017. Deaths due to overdose of a synthetic form of opioid, mainly fentanyl, reached 536 as observed over the past 2 years. Deaths due to heroin use continue to rise from 593 in 2012 to 715 in 2017.
In Orange County, heroin and fentanyl overdoses have climbed based from the recent news report by the Orange County Register. The rate of opioid-overdose deaths in this county was higher compared to Los Angeles, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego, Ventura and Santa Barbara counties and California as a whole. The main culprit is the over prescription of opioid for patients.
Opioid and Its Addictive Effect
Opioids are a class of drugs used for treating mild to severe pain. People abuse the use of this drug due to the intense calming effect it provides. It also stimulates the nervous system to produce feelings of pleasure.
People who use this drug develop tolerance. They already require a higher dose to achieve the same effect they got from its first use. When they take this over time, they develop dependence. When they stop using the drug, they already have physical and psychological withdrawal symptoms. These symptoms include:
- Muscle cramping
- and Anxiety
Dependence does not necessarily lead to addiction. But, there’s still a small percentage that those who compulsively use the drug for a long time will develop an addiction to it.
Opioid addiction comes with a compulsive urge to use opioid drugs even when they are no longer medically needed. People who become addicted to it prioritize opioid use over other activities or social interaction they once enjoyed. Subsequently, their professional and personal lives are affected.
The commonly used prescribed opioids include:
- Methadone and
Heroin is considered as an illegal opioid.
Treatment Options for Opioid Addiction in Orange County
Here at Roots through Recovery, we provide a Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) for opioid addiction. We take the misuse of medications very seriously. All medications are prescribed under the oversight of our physician, and we follow strict MAT protocols.
We know that every patient is different. So, our team conducts a comprehensive medical and psychosocial assessment of the patient before prescribing medications. Once we determined that there is a need for medications, our medical director prescribes and manages the patient’s medications. He closely oversees the patient’s case to ensure the dosage is correct and not hindering the treatment.
Some of the common medications we provide depending on the need of the patient are buprenorphine, buprenorphine/naloxone and naltrexone. Since these medications works differently, we take these into consideration as well as the risks and benefits they provide to the patient. We take into account the right medication that will make the patient feel normal with little to no side effect. The patient will not feel withdrawal symptoms and can manage or control cravings.
For the patient to fully recovery, we instruct them to faithfully follow the treatment plan. The medications we prescribe can be taken safely for years. If the patient feels a need to change dosage, switch to another medicine or completely stop, he must first consult our medical staff in doing so.
Here at Roots through Recovery, we realize the importance of combining medication with group and individual therapy. We know that both treatment options can prevent future relapse. Counseling will address the personal, social or other problems of the patient that contribute to his addiction.
If you need more information about substance abuse treatment in Orange County, call us at Roots Through Recovery. You may contact us at (866) 766-8776 to schedule a FREE consultation or visit us at 3939 Atlantic Ave, Suite 102 Long Beach, CA 90807.
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