Fighting Opioid Addiction Needs Better Public Policy
Posted On June 20, 2016
Opioid Addiction Recovery: Less Shame and More Treatment Options
One challenge facing society today regarding the opiate addiction crisis is a large group of “desperately seeking a fix” addicts. This group of opiate addicts needs immediate help in the form of a buprenorphine 5-day step-down detox. This eliminates the physical pain associated with withdrawal. Buprenorphine treatment also decreases relapse.
Other addicts will need a longer detox using Suboxone. For this population, a simple medication replacement treatment using Suboxone or methadone is effective. A large number of recovering people in our communities adds value to addiction prevention and recovery efforts.
Recovery Options – Gender Specific Addiction Treatment
Suboxone treatment not only eases withdrawal symptoms. When combined with a comprehensive and holistic addiction recovery program – suboxone therapy can increase the chances staying sober without relapse.
At Arrowhead Lodge Recovery, we understand that successfully treating opioid addiction requires a comprehensive approach that addresses not just the addiction, but the root cause of each man’s pain; as well as his physical and mental health. It is critical for older men to receive addiction treatment in a setting targeted for the unique psychological and health issues facing older men.
Our systems (and society) seem to have have no problem spending more than $7,000 (of taxpayers’ money) per opiate arrest. And add to that the daily rate for incarceration, then the cost of probation and parole upon release.
Yet our society will not execute a much less costly recovery system that cost $625 for a five-day step down buprenorphine detox.
To add insult to injury, our automatic incarceration system for addicts increases relapse and recidivism. But the detox system decreases recidivism and increases public safety. Some addicts are chronic cases, ‘frequent fliers’. However, it seems our policymakers are addicted to bad policies – just as the addict is to the drug.
A large surge of recovering people in our communities adds tremendous value to our prevention and recovery efforts. To this day, one of the main principles in a recovering addict’s life is to help other addicts achieve recovery. This is done through public information, active-reality prevention services, and attraction to recovery in general. These activities add a much-needed dimension to our “help the addict to recovery” efforts.
Reducing the Shame of Seeking Addiction Treatment
Stigma prevents many from seeking recovery. Lack of appropriate available services in the community is the other half of the equation.
A more humane approach to detox – and an increase in recovering communities – will begin a new age of much-needed pride in recovery.
Some people say one of the main sources of shame in addiction is not seeking help (once you realize you need help). But a bigger shame in our communities is not providing appropriate help when an addict seeks help.
Do not underestimate the ability of addiction to strike your family and loved ones. Addiction does not discriminate. Over 56 million Americans are in recovery or need to be in recovery. This means we all have someone we love and or care deeply for who is an addict.
We can either assist these individuals in becoming sober and productive citizens. Or we can spend more than 3x as much money to imprison addicts. Incarceration does nothing to rehabilitate addicts. Putting addicts in prison has been very successful in helping addicts become addicted for life.
What will we, as a society, choose to do?
Addiction Rehab Questions?
For confidential addiction rehab and recovery inquiries, please feel welcome to contact Ken Chance at Arrowhead Lodge Recovery, 888-654-2800.