What is Opioid Dependency?
According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, opioid dependency or opioid addiction is a chronic brain disease that causes an individual to seek out drugs, even though they cause harm.
Who Does it Affect?
The truth is anyone can fall victim to opioid dependency. In fact, it is such a widespread problem that the United States has declared an opioid epidemic.
Just look at these opioid dependency numbers:
- Nearly 80% of heroin users report misusing prescription opioids prior to heroin.
- 116 people die every day from opioid related drug overdoses.
- 1 million people had an opioid use disorder in 2016.
- 5 million people misused prescription opioids in 2016.
While not everyone falls victim to opioid dependency, a combination of factors impacts risk for addiction and opioid dependence, including:
- Biology: A person’s genes can account for about half of a person’s risk for addiction. Gender, ethnicity, and the occurrence of mental health disorders can also impact the risk for opioid dependency and addiction.
- Environment: Peer pressure, physical and sexual abuse, early exposure to drugs, stress and parental guidance can impact the likelihood of opioid dependence.
- Development: The earlier that drug use begins, the greater the chance it develops to addiction. Teens are especially prone to addiction because areas in their brain that controls decision-making, judgement and self-control are still being developed.
Reasons for Opioid Dependency
Many people begin taking prescription opioids prescribed by a doctor as a way to treat critical pain. However, because of their strength and potency, opioids carry a high risk of dependency and addiction. Repeated drug use can even lead to brain changes that challenge a person’s self-control and interfere with the ability to resist the urge to take more opioids.
Long-term use of opioids can result in other changes to the brain, affecting functions like:
Opioid Dependency Treatment Options
While facing opioid dependency can seem overwhelming, it is important to understand that it treatable and can be successfully managed. Treatment that is tailored to an individual’s opioid use patterns, and/or any additional medical, mental and social problems is key to achieving lasting recovery.
We are here to support you in finding the best treatment option for your recovery and ensure you have the help you need to move forward.
We’re Here For You. Reach Us Now To Get Started.
Call or email today.