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Addiction Recovery Treatment

Opioid Addiction in the United States

Nearly 72,000 Americans died from drug overdoses last year, according to preliminary data released Wednesday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — an increase of 5 percent from 2018. Deaths from drug overdoses remain higher than the peak yearly death totals ever recorded for car accidents, guns or AIDS, and their acceleration in recent years has pushed down overall life expectancy in the United States.

Drug deaths in America, which fell for the first time in 25 years in 2018, rose to record numbers in 2019 and are continuing to climb, a resurgence that is being complicated and perhaps worsened by the coronavirus pandemic. 

How does opioid addiction happen?

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Anyone who takes opioids is at risk of developing an addiction. Your personal history and the length of time you use opioids play a role, but it's impossible to predict who's vulnerable to eventual dependence on and abuse of these drugs. Legal or illegal, stolen and shared, these drugs are responsible for the majority of overdose deaths in the U.S. today.

Opioids are highly addictive, in large part because they activate powerful reward centers in your brain. Opioids trigger the release of endorphins, your brain's feel-good neurotransmitters. Endorphins muffle your perception of pain and boost feelings of pleasure, creating a temporary but powerful sense of well-being. When an opioid dose wears off, you may find yourself wanting those good feelings back, as soon as possible. This is the first milestone on the path toward potential addiction.

Opioid Addiction Treatments

It's a common mistake to think that addiction is a condition that can be treated just by “personal will”, but this is far from true. Addiction is a physiological brain condition that needs to be treated by a comprehensive approach that involves medication, behavioral therapy, and emotional support.

Buprenorphine (Suboxone)

Opioids produce analgesic effects and euphoria on brain receptors. Stopping opioids after continuous use may cause feelings of discomfort and anxiety, which may lead to sudden dependence or addiction.

Since this process happens at a physiological level in the brain, adequate treatment involves a combination of medication (such as Suboxone), behavioral therapy, and emotional support.
 

How does Suboxone work?

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