Helping a Loved One Through Opioid Addiction

Opioid addiction is heartbreakingly common. As many as 29% of people who receive opioid prescriptions for chronic pain misuse the drugs, and between 8% and 12% develop an opioid use disorder, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

It is a problem with potentially serious results: Every day in the United States, 128 people die as a result of overdosing on opioids.

Fortunately, treatment can help people who misuse or are addicted to opioids. At Blaser Medical in Farmington, Utah, Dr. Brett Blaser and our team of caring providers understand opioid addiction. Blaser Medical has a board-certified addiction medicine physician on staff to help our patients overcome their opioid addiction.

Dr. Blaser would like to share some important information with you about helping your loved one through opioid addiction.

Understanding opioid addiction

There are two types of opioids: prescription painkillers and illegal street drugs. Prescription opioid painkillers include familiar names such as codeine, morphine, oxycodone, hydrocodone. Illegal opioid drugs include heroin and various types of synthetic opioids.

Opioids are usually safe when they are used correctly. However, they are highly addictive. Some people can become addicted to them, especially if they misuse them. People who are addicted to opioids can’t control their opioid use.

Symptoms of opioid addiction

Although signs and symptoms of opioid addiction vary, they may include one or more of the following:

How you can help your loved one

If you believe your loved one has an addiction to opioids, you can help in three ways.

  1. Talk to your loved one. Tell them you are worried about them and want to help. Treat them with love, not judgment.
  2. Encourage your loved one to see their health care provider. Offer to help them set up an appointment and to go with them for their consultation. 
  3. Ask for help. If your loved one refuses to admit they have a problem or to see their health care provider, consider reaching out to their provider yourself.

Treatment for opioid addiction

Receiving treatment from the addiction specialists at Blaser Medical can help your loved one break their reliance on opioids. Treatment may include medications that can ease the severe symptoms of opioid withdrawal, including nausea, chills, pain, sleep problems, and a racing heartbeat.

Our specialists also encourage many of our patients to receive counseling to help them address any underlying emotional issues that may contribute to their addiction. Counseling can also help increase their chances of developing habits that can help them stay off opioids in the future.

Don’t bear the burden of addiction alone. If you or someone you love is misusing or addicted to opioids, Dr. Blaser and his team can help. Make an appointment a consultation by calling our office at 385-210-1474 or sending us a message via our website.

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