How to Help Someone Overcome an Opiate Addiction

How to Help Someone Overcome an Opiate Addiction

How to Help Someone Overcome an Opiate Addiction

If you have landed here at this blog it is likely that you have a loved one—a teen, a young adult child, a spouse, a sibling, or a parent—who is struggling with an addiction to opiates.  Or…maybe that person is you.  Seeking out information about how to help someone overcome an opiate addiction is the first productive step toward recovery, including if that someone is you.

Opiate addiction, including heroin, prescription pain medications, and fentanyl, has become so prolific in the U.S. that it has been called a national opioid epidemic.  The statistics regarding overdose deaths to opiates are staggering, with an estimated 90-115 individuals losing their lives to opiates and opioids daily, according to a report by the Centers for Disease Control.  No one is spared from the serious consequences of the opioid/opiate epidemic, as friends and relatives on daily Facebook news feeds regularly post notices of overdoses.

As alarming as the drug epidemic is, there is hope for those in the grip of addiction.  Knowing how to help someone overcome an opiate addiction starts with getting informed about treatment options and what to expect in rehab.

How to Approach a Loved One With an Opiate Addiction

When a loved one is fully immersed in opiate addiction their life has likely become quite chaotic.  As the family of the addict, it is heartbreaking to witness their decline and frustrating to try to manage the fallout of the addiction.  When the situation crescendos, it helps to seek guidance from a trusted resource in order to learn what are the best ways to approach your loved one about addiction treatment.  In addition, doing some research about treatment options, types of rehabs, and different treatment philosophies will help in taking next steps.

Sometimes the loved one is facing legal consequences related to the opiate or heroin addiction.  This may offer an opportunity to approach them about treatment, as they may be more receptive under these circumstances.  When the negative consequences begin to snowball the addicted individual may be more open to changing their life.

Another option is to stage a professional intervention, where an addiction and recovery specialist will join the family and close friends in confronting the loved one about their concerns for his or her well-being, offering support and love, while also communicating how addiction is impacting them.

The Community Reinforcement and Family Training (CRAFT) is a set of therapeutic techniques that help individuals closest to the addicted loved one to use positive communication skills that will help the loved one overcome denial and agree to get into treatment.

How to Effectively Help Someone Overcome an Opiate Addiction

The first thing to understand about recovery from opiate addiction is that detox alone is simply not enough.  Without the requisite therapeutic treatment for the addiction, the individual will return to using the drug soon after detoxing.  An inpatient program is the best treatment option for a loved one with an opiate addiction.

Each individual case is approached according to many factors that will influence the treatment plan, such as the severity and history of the addiction, whether there is a co-existing mental health disorder, and general physical health status.  Once evaluated during the admissions process, a customized treatment plan will be created.

After detox and withdrawal are completed, then ongoing cognitive individual therapy, group therapy, and other adjunct therapies will define the daily treatment schedule.  With opiate addiction, medications such as Suboxone or methadone are helpful in easing withdrawal symptoms and curbing drug cravings to a significant degree.  These medications, in addition to the psychotherapy, are very effective in maintaining recovery.

The Treatment Specialist Locates Premier Opiate Addiction Treatment

The Treatment Specialist is a trusted resource for guiding family members wondering how to help someone overcome an opiate addiction.  The Treatment Specialist can provide free locator services to find the best treatment match for someone with an opiate addiction.  The specialists will also conduct a free insurance check to get the specific plan benefits for treatment and recovery services.  For more information about getting help for an opiate addiction, please contact The Treatment Specialist today at (866) 644-7911.

About the Author

Marissa Katrin Maldonado has been working in the field of addiction and behavioral health since 2006. She has been dedicated to helping individuals and families find treatment for addiction, dual diagnosis, mental health, and eating disorder conditions. Marissa received her undergraduate degree in Psychology from San Francisco State University and her Masters Degree in Business Administration with a focus in Management at the University of Redlands, School of Business.

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