Munson Health
 
Related Information
Health Library
Opioid Addiction

Back to Document

by McCoy K
 

Risk Factors

Opioid addiction is more common in males and people under 30 years old (risk of addiction decreases as age increases). Other factors that may increase your chance of opioid addiction include:
Physical dependence may contribute to the development and continuance of addiction. Physical dependence is when your body needs a drug to function normally. Withdrawal symptoms when the medicine is stopped or reduced can be a sign of physical dependence. Withdrawal symptoms can be intense and include nausea, vomiting, and sweating. It can make cessation of drug use difficult. Physical dependence may occur with abuse or with long term proper use of medications.
 

Treatment

Talk with your doctor about the best treatment plan for you. Treatment options include:

Rehabilitation Programs

Rehabilitation programs can be inpatient or outpatient. Inpatient rehab involves staying in a controlled environment from several weeks up to one year, depending on nature of addiction and factors that contribute to the addiction. Before going home, some inpatients reside at half-way houses where they can slowly regain their independence. Outpatient rehab can also last up to a year, but you can live at home. Outpatients make frequent visits to clinics for treatment.
Components of all rehab involves:
  • Detoxification and controlled withdrawal with medication
  • Treatment for other psychological conditions
  • Counseling and support

Support Groups

Narcotics Anonymous is a twelve-step program that help support people who are recovering from addiction to opioid drugs.

Behavioral Therapy

Behavioral therapy is designed to modify people’s attitudes and behaviors related to opioid abuse. In therapy, you will learn how to avoid and cope with situations in which you are most likely to use drugs, and avoid situations that may cause relapse. Therapy sessions may include individual, group, or family counseling.

Medications

Certain medications can be used to treat opioid dependence and addiction. They may be used during detoxification to reduce withdrawal symptoms. They may also be continued through maintenance to decrease craving and reduce the risk of relapse. They are given as a part of an overall treatment approach including counseling. Common medication options include:
  • Methadone
  • Buprenorphine
  • Naltrexone
  • Buprenorphine/naloxone (Suboxone)
The choice of medication will depend on drugs involved in addiction, your medical history, and recovery commitment.
Other medications may be needed to treat underlying issues, such as depression or anxiety. These medications may help you on your way to a full and productive life as well as prevent relapse.
 

RESOURCES

American Academy of Family Physicians Family Doctor
http://familydoctor.org

National Institute on Drug Abuse
http://www.drugabuse.gov

 

CANADIAN RESOURCES

Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse
http://www.ccsa.ca

The Council on Drug Abuse
http://drugabuse.ca

 

References


Drug facts: Treatment approaches to drug addiction. National Institute on Drug Abuse website. Available at: http://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/treatment-approaches-drug-addiction . Updated September 2009. Accessed March 13, 2013.


Edlund M, Steffick D, Hudson T, Harris T, Sullivan M. Risk factors for clinically recognized opioid abuse and dependence among veterans using opioids for chronic non-cancer pain. Pain . 2007;129(3):355-362.


Hall W, Doran C, Degenhardt L, et al. Illicit opiate abuse. National Center for Biotechnology Information website. Available at: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/bv.fcgi?rid=dcp2.section.7003 . Published 2006. Accessed March 11, 2013.


Opiate addiction treatment programs. Addiction-Treatment website. Available at: http://www.addiction-treatment.com/research/opiate/ . Accessed March 11, 2013.


Opioid abuse or dependence. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/what . Updated February 15, 2013. Accessed March 11, 2013.


Opioid addiction. American Academy of Family Physicians Family Doctor website. Available at: http://familydoctor.org/familydoctor/en/diseases-conditions/opioid-addiction.html . Updated January 2011. Accessed March 11, 2013.


Opioid withdrawal. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/what . Updated July 13, 2011. Accessed March 11, 2013.


Praveen KT, Law F, O'Shea J, et al. Opioid dependence. Am Fam Physcian . 2012;86(6):565-566.


Prescription drug addiction. EBSCO Health Library website. EBSCO Health Library website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/healthlibrary . Updated December 2011. Accessed March 11, 2013.


The Science of Addiction. National Institute on Drug Abuse website. Available at: http://www.drugabuse.gov/sites/default/files/sciofaddiction.pdf . Updated August 2010. Accessed March 11, 2013.


Types of treatment programs. Principle of drug addiction treatment: A researched-based guide. National Institute on Drug Abuse website. Available at: http://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/principles-drug-addiction-treatment-research-based-guide-third-edition/drug-addiction-treatment-in-united-states/types-treatment-programs . Updated December 2012. Accessed March 11, 2013.

 

Revision Information