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Getting Help

Getting help is not nearly as complicated as you may first think. Let’s face it, starting any type of treatment is a big and hopefully life changing step. To be honest, there is no “text book” way to handle it. Everyone is different. The way I personally dealt with my drug addiction was Suboxone Treatment.  That might not be the best choice for you though.  You should carefully consider what approach to addiction care you take.   The most important step is the first one. It’s real simple. Once you consider all of the options,  just do it!! I think this page will make it easier to sort things out.Technically the first time you try a chemical substance is when you need help. That’s just a fact that I learned looking back the huge mess that me and most everyone else I met that was using made. The nature of these drugs are that they leave you incapable of perceiving or dealing with reality. Now the drugs I’m referring to are narcotics: Opiates, Cocaine, Crack, etc. That’s not to doubt that pot can be quite mentally addictive to some people. I just prefer to talk about what I know best.

If you find yourself experimenting with narcotics you should know what you’re getting your self into.When a user first starts “getting high” he/she will feel that they are invincible. ” It can’t happen to me”. “I know what I’m doing”. They have the frame of mind that, “It’s just for recreation”. This is how 50% of people get hooked. The other half are the ones that had a bad accident and have or had chronic pain issues. When the doctor stops prescribing pain medication they go into the streets and get what they can find off of the black market. This most likely when they upgrade to something stronger (eg. Heroin). Mixed in with those statistics is the group of people who have mental or psychological issues and tend to self medicate. I sometimes tend to think that these are the ones that “fall through the cracks” so to speak.

Addiction  Symptoms

Addiction is a physical or mental dependence on a behavior or substance that a person feels powerless to stop. Thats right, not only can addiction be about a substance, it can also be about a behavior. Take gambling for instance. it’s estimated that 1 to 5 percent of American adults are addicted to gambling. Sex is another example of a behavior that can be addictive to some people. Substances are what we are focusing on here.

To sum up the broader symptoms of substance abuse, the subject will either be drowsy or hyper. They may be distant or flighty. There could be a loss of appetite, or they could be raiding the fridge. One symptom you can always count on is that they will be broke. Things they used to own will show up in pawn shops. Their professional work will suffer or they may have recently lost a job. All of these symptoms will show up sooner or later. You will have those that can “fool” everyone, for years even, but the only ones they’re fooling is themselves.

Addiction Care / Treatment Options

The most important issues here are how to get treatment and how to know if you’re ready. Rule number one is that you can always get help. It is always out there. In my view, there are three main ways to get detoxed off of controlled substances. 1- You can get into some kind of live-In treatment center. 2- you can sweat it out your self. 3- Go to some form of out patient treatment.

Live-In Treatment Centers

Many people dread the thought of a live-in treatment center. The length of stay can be anywhere from one week to two years, although an average stay for some one with a serious addiction disorder is about 60-90 days.. A good thing about them is that you can work out your problems with a licensed professional in some way every day. In fact in most programs, it is mandatory to go to group therapy every day. The accommodations can vary from the county assisted program, which is available to most people even if they are broke or have little insurance, to the fancy $20,000 a month “luxury” center. I once called a “decent” live in center about treatment and they wanted me to give them $9,000 down and pay off another $10,000! I told the receptionist that I was a heavy Heroin/Cocaine user and had very little money to offer. If I had any money before I started using (which I could have easily paid in cash before) I clearly had none now! The truth is a live-in center is a great option if you can’t get away from People, Places, and Things. Getting away from your old using environment is the #1 most important thing if you are to be a success!

Out Patient Suboxone Treatment

In my experience, this is the treatment option that works best for opioid dependence. Remember that each case is unique to it’s self. For those users where it is possible to be removed from their current using environment: People, Places, and Things, Out Patient Suboxone Treatment is unbelievable if the program is followed. I’m not going to bore you with statistics, but this treatment if followed, with a real want to get well, is the best option out there for opioid addicted patients. Here’s how it works:

Look up “Suboxone Doctors” in Google. You should also add a geographical term to your search, such as your area code or city so Google can give you a list of doctors in the immediate area. If you don’t have the Internet, ask someone who does or go to the library.

Make an appointment. Ask the receptionist if they do “Out Patient Opioid Dependency Treatment” If they say yes and sound friendly, go ahead and ask if they use Suboxone. If they say that they do, you are in business! You’ve got the hard part out of the way. Now all you have to do is make an appointment.

Getting The Office Visit Timing Correct

This is an essential part of your introduction to Suboxone therapy. The rule is that the user should abstain from Opiates for 12 – 16 hours before the time of getting to the office. In other words, Don’t do dope the last 16 hours before your office visit. Yes you are to arrive in a medium state of withdrawal! I know it sucks but this is important for medical reasons. If you don’t follow these instructions, the doctor may opt. not to see you again! So suck it up!

The doctor will ask you questions about your tolerance to opiates and your usage history. Be honest! These questions are important for them to figure out your dosage. Most people with a moderate-severe addiction to opiates usually get a dose of 16 mg. That is two pills a day. This dosage is more than enough for 99% of people. The doctor should give you a script right there and you should fill it immediately, as you will still be in a moderate state of withdrawal.

How Long Should I Stay On Suboxone?

Ultimately of course, this is the doctors area of expertise. Right? Technically speaking, yes, it is. However, do not let a physician push you around about tapering down when it’s not your time yet. Typically speaking, most Suboxone patients are treated for one year and then start to come slowly down on the dosage. The reason being is that while taking Suboxone, the patient is directed to participate in group therapy and/or NA meetings, and/or one on one therapy. Patients are not to take Suboxone without having psychological therapy with it!

I hope this information has been informative to you and directs you to the right places for help. Good luck and stay strong!

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