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Abuse Of Painkillers On The Rise Says Florida Drug Treatment Center

Sep 15, 2008
Florida drug treatment centers say the number of people seeking help for the abuse of painkillers is on the rise. OxyContin, Vicodin, and other opiates are only available with a doctor's prescription, but more and more people are still able to abuse them. In fact, an estimated 5.2 million people are believed to be abusing painkillers right now. Because people with this type of addiction are often living with chronic pain, their addiction requires an individual plan introduced by residential drug rehabs to be treated.

Who Is Abusing Painkillers?

What was once a very hidden addiction is now making headlines throughout the country. In Georgia in 2007, WWE wrestler Chris Benoit murdered his wife and seven-year-old son before killing himself after a history of concussions, drug abuse, and an addiction to painkillers. This isn't the only famous addiction to painkillers. Many famous names such as Anna Nicole Smith and Matthew Perry have also suffered from this terrible addiction. Conservative radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh has also admitted to abuse of opiates.

Residential drug rehabs aren't just treating the rich and famous for this addiction, however. Many ordinary people start using painkillers after an accident or injury that is causing genuine pain, eventually becoming addicted. This occurs because the longer someone takes the opiates, the more their body becomes accustomed to the drug. This requires them to increase their dose in order to achieve the same effect. Once that person becomes an addict, say Florida drug treatment experts, the addict can be taking upwards of thirty or more pills every day.

Where Are They Coming From?

In 2005 in Florida, drug treatment wasn't in the mind of one 60-year-old family physician. The doctor received a 25-year sentence and $550,000 in fines for trafficking Oxycodone, fraud, and racketeering and an additional five-year sentence for selling and handing out Xanax and Valium. Doctors do not generally cause addictions intentionally, but an estimated 50% do fail to talk to their patients about their addiction.

Pain pill addicts don't just rely on their regular prescriptions for the drugs either. They use excuses such as losing their medication or saying that they spilled them in order to get their doctor to prescribe more. Florida drug rehabs say that when this stops working, addicts will head to drop in clinics or jump between several doctors to get enough medication to satisfy their habit.

How Painkiller Addictions Are Treated

One of the first steps residential drug rehabs take to treat someone addicted to opiates is a medically controlled detoxification. This doesn't cure the addiction, but it makes the violent withdrawal caused by the addiction much easier to deal with. This withdrawal causes chills, vomiting, pain, and a variety of other symptoms that make the abuser very ill. From there, Florida drug treatment centers say, a personalized program is developed to help the addict live a drug-free life. This includes an alternative treatment plan for dealing with pain that many addicts do suffer from.

The abuse of opiates is a tragic reflection of modern society and it is taking its toll in devastating ways. It isn't a poor man's drug, it isn't a fad of the rich, it is a very real addiction that permanently affects millions of lives every year. Florida drug treatment experts say the only way to combat this form of addiction effectively is to educate the public, work with healthcare professionals, and get addicts into residential drug rehabs before it is too late.
About the Author
Author is a freelance copywriter. For more information on Florida
Drug Treatment
, visit http://www.alcohol-drug-treatment.com.
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