Your questions about addiction and addiction treatment, answered.
What is addiction?
Addiction is the compulsive use of a habit-forming substance known by the user to be harmful. It is characterized by progressive tolerance and well-defined physiological symptoms upon withdrawal.
What are the drug use requirements?
You must be in withdrawal to start buprenorphine/naloxone (Suboxone).
To ensure this:
Is Buprenorphine safe for pregnant patients?
Buprenorphine is not approved by the FDA for use during pregnancy and is classified as “Category C,” meaning there is limited safety data in humans. However, you should be made aware of the fact that there are a number of recent studies showing neonatal outcomes are no different with buprenorphine than with Methadone. There is also a significant drop in the incidence and the severity of Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS). Consequently, choosing to proceed with buprenorphine treatment during pregnancy is a personal decision that only you can make. To help you with your decision, you will be supplied with a series of articles to read and pass along to your prenatal care provide. Read more about our Addiction & Pregnancy Program.
How can I tell if I’m addicted?
If you’re asking this question about addiction, it may be because you can see that your use of a substance or a compulsive behavior is disrupting your life. An addiction, though, isn’t the same as using a lot of drugs or alcohol or frequently indulging in an activity like sex, shopping or gambling. If you’re truly heading towards an addiction, you won’t be able to stay away from the drug or the activity or cut back, as much as you want to. You’ll experience cravings and will continue to use the substance or repeat the behavior, no matter who or what it hurts: your relationships, your career, your finances, your health. People with a substance use disorder often miss important family, social and work/academic obligations and forego hobbies and other activities in order to use. The addiction becomes their single focus, crowding out the rest of life. If something interferes with your ability to use, you’ll experience psychological withdrawal symptoms, which vary depending on the addiction; these can include feeling angry, upset or anxious. For substance users, physical withdrawal symptoms can include vomiting, headaches, muscle aches, fevers, chills and/or seizures.
Is it true that you an be addicted to more than one substance/behavior at a time?
Yes, and in fact this is common. Those who have an addiction are also likely to have what are called “co-occurring disorders,” such as a mental health issue(s) like depression or anxiety. And it is common for people to have more than one substance or process/behavior addiction. Research clearly links substance use to problems with gambling, video gaming, disordered eating, Internet use and compulsive sexual behavior. Not everyone with a substance use disorder has multiple addictions or another psychological problem, but in general, there is a lot of overlap between these issues.
What if I have a mental health issue (like depression), too?
First, if you’re struggling with addiction and a mental disorder, you’re definitely not alone; many people are in the same situation. If you decide to seek treatment, it’s essential that whatever program you choose addresses both issues at the same time. Treatment that factors in both addiction and mental health will give you the best possible chance for a successful, lasting recovery.
What kind of treatment is right for me?
There’s no easy or short answer to that question about addiction. That’s because everyone dealing with addiction has their own history, values and beliefs. Plus, factors like where you live, your job and what health insurance you have are bound to play big roles, too. Simply put, professional treatment can take place on an inpatient basis (at a rehab facility where you stay for a period of weeks) or on an outpatient basis (What we offer here at ROAD). Outpatient means you sleep at home but attend either a day treatment program (for seven or eight hours a day) or an evening outpatient program for a couple of hours several times a week. If your home environment is contributing to your addiction or is not a supportive place that’s conducive to recovery, an inpatient facility might be your best bet.
What if I’m not ready for treatment?
Some individuals living with addiction know when they’ve had enough and that it’s time to get some kind of help. Others may debate their readiness to quit for months, years or decades. Even if you’re not convinced you’re ready — and even if you flat-out don’t want to stop using — it’s important to understand that treatment can still be successful. Put another way, you don’t need to be willing to stop or have “hit bottom” in order to move toward a life of recovery. And that includes being forced into treatment by a loved one, your employer or even the court system. As the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) puts it, “Treatment does not need to be voluntary to be effective.”
How can I afford to pay for treatment?
We participate with a wide variety of insurances, making our program an affordable treatment option for many people.