Prescription painkiller abuse is a rising problem across America, with Arizona being no exception. This is an epidemic that increasingly starts in the physician’s office with people seeking pain-relief for chronic conditions. There is still a widely-held misconception of an addict as being a person actively seeking out drugs and hanging out in places where substances are routinely abused. As the significant increase in people addicted to painkillers clearly shows, it is very possible for anyone from any walk of life to become addicted.
Why Are Painkillers Addictive?
The kinds of painkillers that are most-widely abused are opioid-based. This is a synthetic version of the extract of an opium poppy that is more commonly known as heroin. The way heroin works is by “distracting” the brain from pain signals by flooding it with dopamine and creating an intense euphoria for the user. This is a compelling feeling that many seek to achieve on purpose. However, a person who is using opiate-based drugs to relieve pain is less concerned with the euphoria than they are the release from suffering.
The problem starts when the body develops a tolerance to the effects of opioid-based painkillers. This is a natural process that happens when we repeatedly consume a certain substance. For example, someone who drinks coffee may find themselves drinking two cups instead of one in the morning as they need more to get them going. Naturally with substances as potent as opioids, increasing the dose carries a much higher risk. In fact, around 60,000 Americans die each year as a result of opiate overdose.
Once tolerance has developed, people often find themselves faking prescriptions or doctor shopping to get more of the meds they need. They may no longer need pain relief at this stage but they will be driven by an addictive compulsion to use that is driving by extreme cravings and withdrawal symptoms. When the brain craves progressively more stimulus from opioids, the withdrawal symptoms that emerge if the person doesn’t use can be truly overwhelming. This negative cycle of withdrawal and abuse is a classic characteristic of addiction although it can be very successfully treated.
CASA Recovery Treats Addiction in San Juan Capistrano, CA
Arizona painkiller abuse is on the rise and CASA Recovery is at the forefront in the battle against addiction. We offer entirely personalized treatment plans that have been designed specifically for you after considerable assessment. Our addiction treatment facility in Orange County is in beautiful surroundings that enhance the healing process to set you firmly on the road to recovery. Addiction can be an extremely lonely illness. Take the first step towards healing and reach out to our addiction specialists at CASA Recovery today.