Cause Of Addiction

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Opiate Addiction Treatment: Breaking Free!


Opiates VS Opioids - What Is The Difference?


Is Treatment for Prescription Opioid Abuse and Heroin Addiction the Same?

Prescription opiates and heroin both cause similar addiction syndromes and effects in those who abuse them. As such, both types of opiate addiction treatments are actually very similar and borrow from a number of the same concepts, medications, and therapies.

Prescription Opioid Rehab’s Origins

In recent years, the number of prescription opioid addiction cases has risen dramatically, partly due to the extreme availability of the drugs and the fact that many more doctors are now prescribing them in large numbers.

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, the options available for the treatment of prescription opioid addiction are actually “drawn from research on the treatment of heroin addiction.” Therefore, both addiction syndromes and their treatments are considerably similar.

Differences Between the Programs

There are, in fact, some differences between the two types of rehab programs. Although the medications and therapies used to treat prescription opioid addiction can also be utilized in the same way for heroin rehab, there are certain aspects of the heroin addiction syndrome that must be taken into account as a part of treatment and recovery.

• According to the Center for Substance Abuse Research, heroin users are often more likely to suffer from serious medical issues, such as abscesses, infections, collapsed veins, etc. Those who abuse the drug must be screened and treated for any of these issues that are unlikely to be experienced by prescription opioid users.

• Those who abuse heroin often have been doing so for a long period of time. The drug also is stronger and more intense than its prescribed counterparts, which is why many addicts switch to heroin over time (NIDA). For these reasons, someone who has been abusing heroin is often automatically in need of a longer treatment program.

• Withdrawal from heroin, a shorter-acting drug, often takes less time but causes more intense symptoms, which can create a need for most users of this drug to receive methadone as a treatment (Harvard Medical School). Though prescription drug users may need methadone as well, it is almost a certainty that this medication will be the only one able to treat heroin withdrawal safely.

Despite these few distinctions, all types of opiate addiction treatment are considerably similar with the main deviations decided mostly by the needs of the patient.

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