Prescription opioid painkiller drugs can be used effectively and appropriately to treat pain.
However, rates of abuse have increased dramatically in the past decade. The increased availability of opioid prescriptions for even moderate pain has contributed to a dramatic rise of addiction. This increase in opioid abuse is directly linked to changing trends in pain management.
My Prescription is Not Addictive – Is It?
In the last few decades, the treatment of chronic pain has expanded into primary care settings. Many primary care MD’s have no specific training in pain medicine and addiction.
This increase in opioid prescriptions was fueled by major drug companies. Companies such as Purdue, manufacturer of Oxycontin, provided doctors with studies showing their prescription painkillers were not addictive.
These studies have now been proven erroneous. In fact, slow release ‘once a day’ opioids such as Oxycontin are more addictive than traditional opioids. Why? Oxycontin does not provide complete pain relief for 12 hours in most users. Patients must take more than prescribed to manage pain.
Baby Boomer Addiction Rate Climbs
OxyContin taken at 12-hour intervals could be “the perfect recipe for addiction,” said Theodore J. Cicero, a neuro-pharmacologist at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis and a leading researcher on how opioids affect the brain. Patients in whom the drug doesn’t last 12 hours can suffer both a return of their underlying pain and “the beginning stages of acute withdrawal,” Cicero said. “That becomes a very powerful motivator for people to take more drugs.”
‘Opioids are Very Addictive – and – Not Very Effective After 12 Weeks’
The Pfizer company has agreed to include this disclosure in its promotional material. The disclosure content includes the fact that narcotic painkillers carry serious risk of addiction even when used properly. Pfizer promised not to promote opioids for unapproved, “off-label” uses such as long-term non-disabling back pain. The company also acknowledges there is no good research on opioids’ effectiveness beyond 12 weeks.
Pfizer makes and markets the extended-release opioid painkiller, Embeda, which is not as central to the opioid addiction epidemic as Purdue’slong-acting opioid OxyContin. The Pfizer marketing agreement could serve as a model for other pharmaceutical companies selling opioid drugs.
Substance Abuse in Boomers Over 50
Substance abuse, particularly of alcohol and prescription drugs, among adults 60 and older is one of the fastest growing health problems facing the country.
As the number of older adults suffering from these addiction disorders climbs – the situation remains underestimated, under-identified, under-diagnosed, and under-treated.
Chronic pain conditions and prescription drug abuse are becoming important public health issues.
Effective Pain Treatment Needed to Decrease Opioid Use
According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), population-based studies reveal that more than 75 million Americans (about 25% of the entire population) have chronic or recurrent pain.
Of these, 40% report the pain as having moderate to severe impact on their lives. Chronic pain has placed an undue burden in lost productivity and as a frequent cause of disability with an estimated cost to employees of greater than $61 billion annually.
Our goal is to assist older men in learning how to enjoy a superior quality of life without the use of alcohol or addictive painkillers.
Arrowhead Lodge Recovery Rehab for Men is a small, private addiction, co-occurring disorder and trauma treatment program for men 30 and older.
Arrowhead Lodge Recovery is located in the beautiful mountains of Prescott, Arizona.
Multi-disciplinary Addiction Treatment for the Whole Person
We use a multi-disciplinary addiction treatment approach to treat the whole person, implemented by licensed professionals.
The Arrowhead Lodge Recovery Staff includes a Physician-Addictionologist, Addiction Psychiatrist, Doctor of Clinical Psychology, Registered Nurse, several Licensed Therapists, and an addiction Nutritionist.
Each client receives individual therapy and counseling; as well as group therapy and counseling.
Recovery Journey to Wholeness and Healing
At our mountain retreat facility near Prescott, Arizona – men find and strengthen inner peace, and experience tranquility.
Arrowhead Lodge Recovery is located in the Rocky Mountain pines of Northern Arizona; in Prescott National Forest. It is a man’s retreat from the hustle and bustle of the daily grind. Our clients feel safe here and are therefore able to open up and work on tough emotional issues around addiction and trauma.
There is something to be said about recovering in a natural setting where the deer graze, coyotes howl, and hawks and eagles soar that helps men reconnect with nature and their authenticity.
It’s difficult to describe just how peaceful it is – you need to be here to experience it firsthand.
Begin Your Recovery Journey at Arrowhead Lodge Recovery
Your confidentiality is assured when you contact us.
Speak personally and privately with Executive Director Dr. Kenneth Chance at (888) 654-2800.