Opioid Use Disorder Treatment Specialist Q&A
Opioid use disorder is characterized by an overwhelming desire to consume opioids, increased opioid tolerance, and withdrawal symptoms when the drugs are stopped. The disorder of opioid usage involves both dependency and addiction, with addiction being the most severe stage of the disease. Are you experiencing nausea, craving, sweating, or sensitivity to pain? Contact Psychiatry Unplugged. Our professional, Dr. Soroya Bacchus, MD, can help you heal safely from opioid use disorder. We have convenient locations to serve you in Glendale CA, and Los Angeles CA. For more information, call us or book an appointment online.
Table of Contents:
What is an opioid use disorder?
What are the signs of opioid addiction?
How is Opioid Addiction Treated?
Where can I get confidential help for opioid addiction?
Opioids have been used for thousands of years for their pain-relieving abilities, with the earliest known use existing in ancient Sumer, over 8,000 years ago. Since then, they have been used in virtually every culture and have even been referenced as a panacea (a solution for all symptoms). In modern times, opioids are used to treat both chronic and acute pain and have helped countless millions alleviate their discomfort. However, developing an addiction to opioids can occur faster than we realize, with many cases of opioid use disorder developing after a patient receives a prescription for a valid illness or injury.
As defined by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), an opioid use disorder is a problematic pattern of opioid use leading to clinically significant impairment or distress. It is also commonly referred to as opioid addiction, although opioid use disorder is now the preferred term. Unfortunately, America is currently in the midst of an opioid epidemic, with 11.5 million self-reported cases of people misusing prescription opioids during the past year. This number does not include the people who gave false responses or did not participate in the survey, which can put this number significantly higher. Opioids are typically prescribed for relief from physical pain, however, their highly addictive nature quickly builds a physical and psychological dependence. Of those who misuse, over half (53%) obtain these medications through a friend or relative.
In order to be considered to have an opioid use disorder, an individual must exhibit at least two of the following signs:
– Opioids are often taken over a longer period of time or in larger amounts than what was originally intended or prescribed
– There is a persistent desire or unsuccessful efforts to cut down on or otherwise manage the use of opioids
– A significant amount of time is spent on activities necessary to obtain opioids (transportation, organization, collaboration), use them, or recover from their effects.
– Cravings, or a strong desire to use opioids
– Recurrent opioid use results in failure to fulfill obligations at school, the workplace, or at home
– Continued opioid use despite having persistent or recurrent social or interpersonal problems caused or exacerbated by the effects of opioids (problems with friends or family)
– Personally important recreational, social, or occupational activities are completely surrendered or significantly reduced directly in relation to opioid use.
– Recurrent opioid use in situations in which it is physically hazardous, such as driving, swimming, or performing physical activities
– Continued opioid use despite knowledge of having a persistent or recurrent physical problem or psychiatric disorder that is likely caused or exacerbated by opioids
– Exhibits tolerance (needing to take higher doses of the substance in order to feel the same effects)
– Exhibits withdrawal, including symptoms such as sweating, shaking, nausea, diarrhea, insomnia, fever
Opioid use disorders require careful, intentional treatment coordinated by a team of medical professionals. In combination with the proven therapeutic methods offered by our partner organizations, Psychiatry Unplugged prescribes FDA-approved medications that alleviate the symptoms of withdrawal and curb cravings so that you can focus on feeling better and improving your well-being. The treatment options we use for opioid addiction include:
– Buprenorphine + Naloxone — Blocks other narcotics while reducing withdrawal risk.
– Naltrexone — Blocks the effects of other narcotics
– Naloxone — Prevents an opioid overdose
If you or someone you love is struggling with opioid use disorder, it is not too late to get help. Call our office or complete our confidential contact form to start yourself on the road to recovery. With proper treatment, addiction recovery is possible. Do not let opioids rule your life — take the first step in the recovery process.
Call us today to book an appointment for opioid use disorder treatment, or visit our clinic today. We have convenient locations to serve you. We serve patients from Los Angeles CA, Glendale CA, Beverly Hills CA, Santa Monica CA, Hollywood CA, Burbank CA, and Pasadena CA. We look forward to serving you!