What Is The Opioid Epidemic & How Suboxone Treatment Is Helping Those With Opioid Addiction
What is the U.S. Opioid Epidemic?
- In the 1990’s, drug companies advised the U.S. public that prescription opioid pain relievers were not addictive. Because of this, more medical providers began prescribing opioids in much higher numbers. In the years following, it because aware that these medicines were indeed highly addictive which caused the U.S. government to declare a public health emergency in 2017. This has led to a very high demand for medications and facilities that can start patients on Suboxone treatment.
U.S. Opioid Epidemic By the Numbers:
- The Center for Disease Control estimates that 130+ Americans die each day from an Opioid Overdose. 1
- 2 million Americans had an opioid use disorder in 2018. 1
- 10.3 million Americans misused opioids in 2018. 1
- 808,000 Americans used heroin for the first time in 2018. 1
- 32,656 deaths were due to synthetic opioid overdoses in 2018. 1
- 40% of overdoses resulting in death involved a prescription opioid. 1
What Prescription Medicines Can Help End the Opioid Epidemic?:
- Buprenorphine (Suboxone and Subutex), Methadone and Vivitrol (extended release Naltrexone) have been approved as medications to help with opiate addiction.
- NIDA studies have shown that Suboxone treatment using these medications is effective in treating opioid use disorder and substance abuse.
- These medications should be combined with behavioral counseling for a full-patient approach, which is commonly referred to as Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT).
How Suboxone Treatment Works in MAT:
- A Suboxone treatment center will use Suboxone (Buprenorphine and Naloxone) to help with the side effects of opiate withdrawal. The use of Suboxone will work in treating opioid addiction by acting as a partial opioid and attaching to the opiate receptors in the brain to block any future opiate high.
- The short term benefits of Suboxone Treatment in MAT is that the patient does not suffer the horrible withdrawls and side effects that come with it.
- The long term benefits of Suboxone in MAT is that the patient can live as close to a normal life as possible and continue to work, attend support groups and maintain positive relationships with friends and family members.
- A suboxone doctor or addiction treatment clinic can taper down patients as their treatment plan dictates. This allows the patient to safely end the use of Suboxone under the care and guidance of a drug abuse professional.
How to Get Started on Suboxone?:
- Directories online list nearby Suboxone / Subutex Clinics. To find a local doctor, check out this locator for offices around the country.
- Many offices are capped at a number of patients that they can actively see, so it is recommended to always call to verify appointment openings and if the office accepts any insurance that you might have.
Ascend Health PLLC is a local Suboxone clinic in Charlotte, NC that accepts Medicaid, Blue Cross and Medicare for their Suboxone Programs. Ascend Health PLLC updates their Blog as well for more information and answers to Frequently Asked Questions.
Call Ascend Health PLLC today to schedule your new patient appointment! Medicaid & Insurances accepted!