Chances are, you know at least once person who has suffered from or is suffering from opioid addiction. This problem is becoming increasingly common in the United States, and in addition to having devastating effects on health, it can tear apart families. Sadly, some of the damage resulting from opioid addiction comes not from the addiction itself, but from misconceptions that people around the addict buy into. The better you truly understand the problem, the better you'll be able to help.
Here's a look at a few potentially damaging misconceptions around opioid addiction:
1. Opioid addiction only happens to those who go down a dangerous path of crime.
The so-called War on Drugs really started to frame drug addicts as criminals who chose a bad life path and were getting what they deserved for doing so. But this is really not the case for many opioid addictions. Opiates are commonly prescribed, and they have been commonly prescribed for a long time. Medications like hydrocodone and codeine are opiates. Many people start taking these medications completely legally — perhaps to manage pain after surgery or due to an ongoing medical condition. But then, they become addicted, and when their prescription runs out, they really have no choice but to obtain their drugs on the street. Understanding this common process, rather than simply considering addicts criminals, will help you be more compassionate when dealing with someone who suffers from opiate addiction.
2. All addicts need to do is stop.
As someone who is not addicted, it's easy for you to think that all the addict needs to do is set their mind to it and stop using the drugs. But it really is not that easy. Opiates are both psychologically and physically addicting. If the user just quits, they will go through a very painful series of withdrawal symptoms, like nausea, bone pain, and lethargy. Withdrawal can be deadly, so addicts should really withdraw under medical supervision; they cannot and should not just quit at home.
3. Addicts need tough love.
This perception may come from television shows that show families putting their foot down or giving addicts ultimatums. While this approach might work in some select situations, it's not the preferred approach and will usually only serve to widen the cracks in your relationship with the addict. The best approach is a gentle, understanding approach overseen by a team of therapists who specialize in treating addictions. It will be helpful for you, as a family member, to see the therapist as well so that you can learn how to better communicate with and care for the addict.
I used to be skeptical about chiropractic healing. However, that was before I tried it for myself. I was in an accident that did serious damage to my back. I followed all of the doctor’s recommendations, did my physical therapy, and still didn’t feel any better. That was when I finally decided to try going to my friend’s chiropractor. It was such a relief when I finally started to feel better thanks to the great chiropractic care I received. That’s when I decided to start researching chiropractic care and how it could be used to treat different conditions. This blog contains the results of that research. If you’re looking for a way to feel better, you too may benefit from chiropractic healing. These articles will help you learn how.