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Drug Abuse: Treatment Approaches

Posted on :  May 1st, 2016  |  By :  towardsrecovery

Drug abuse is serious business. It is a chronic disease that can destroy individual people, families, and communities. Drugs abuse is so harmful because of the way different drugs affect the brain and the body. It is a difficult disease to treat and an easy disease to relapse into.

Several Treatment Options

Fortunately, there are several treatment procedures for drug abuse and addiction. But, the treatments are not easy. In some cases, the addiction needs to be treated for long lengths of time, even entire lifetimes. Treatment in all situations requires addicts to stop using drugs so they can be completely free of drugs and get back to being a productive member of society.

There are several considerations when determining the best treatment option for an addict. First, health care professionals need to emphasize that the treatment works on the brain and behavior. They should also make sure the addict understands that not every treatment works the same way for every addict. In order to make treatments work, addicts need to have access to the treatment and that treatment needs to fits the patient’s physical and psychological needs.

Treatment Considerations

Once the treatment is established, there are more considerations. Addicts need to be in treatment long enough to determine its efficacy. The addict also needs to have ample time to work with a counselor on behavioral therapies. Many addicts will have treatments that involve cognitive therapy and pharmacological treatments, because they work together well. Mental disorders should be considered during behavioral therapies. Then, the treatments need to be reassessed after the patient has spent time in it.

Detoxification Needs

For all addicts, the first step is to detoxify under the care of a medical professional. Despite the belief that addicts need to be willing to detox, addicts can be treated even if they have not voluntarily agreed to it. The treatment program does need to be continuously watched by trained medical professionals. Addicts should be check for infectious diseases while they are being treated – this lets healthcare professionals help the addicts learn how to live with diseases if they do have them.

Fighting Withdrawal

One of the issues that happen with detox is withdrawal. There are medications that can help lower the discomfort that comes from withdrawal from an addictive substance. It is important for addicts to remember than the detox step is not treatment, but it is necessary to have before actual treatment can occur.

Preventing Relapse

Medication can also be used to prevent relapse. The brain can suffer from cravings so medication helps dull the cravings to recovering addicts can get back to a regular way of life. There are medications that help fight the craving from opioids, nicotine, and alcohol.

Along with the help from medication, behavioral therapies also decrease the chances for relapse. These therapies help addicts change their behaviors so they can learn how to live without drugs in a healthy way.

Behavioral treatment can come in the form of outpatient treatment where the patient attends sessions at an office. There are also inpatient programs where addicts live in a center and receive a variety of treatments. They learn how to live without drugs under the watchful eyes of medical professionals.

Issues in the Criminal Justice System

Addicts who are involved in the criminal justice system have slightly different treatment. Although the actual treatment tends to be similar in concept, the execution of it is not as successful as the general population’s treatment is. Criminal offenders usually have poor quality treatment, so they often return to drugs when they return to the regular world.

Those in the criminal justice system need to be treated with the same regard as those who are not in the criminal justice system. But, they need a little bit more. Their cognitive behaviors need to address their lives of crime and how they get involved in it. They also need to look at how they can see the consequences of their actions before they decide to live that life again. Treatment decisions should revolve behavioral therapies, medication therapies, and correctional therapies, too. The courts will have to be involved, so the courts need to agree on what decisions the medical professionals make.

If you have any questions or concerns about drug abuse or looking for methadone as a tool for recovery, please contact us at 905-527-2042 or email at info@towardsrecovery.com.


Older Adults and Substance Abuse: Specialized Treatment

Posted on :  April 21st, 2016  |  By :  towardsrecovery

Substance abuse is not a domain reserved for teens and young adults. In today’s world, anyone and everyone has the potential to become an addict – even older adults. Fortunately, there are many treatment options available and in most cases, older adults have more success with treatment options than younger adults have.

Options for Treatment

When it comes to treatment for addiction, the options include medication and psychological therapy. In many instances, both are used. The decisions about the best course of treatment are usually made by physicians, counselors, or other healthcare professionals. The medical options include prescriptions that help fight addictions to opioids as well as those for nicotine and alcohol.

Entering Into Detox

Getting involved in a treatment program involves taking the first step. This is usually detox – which is actually a large step that involves the body ridding itself of the addictive substance. This is done under the supervision of a drug counselor or a physician. Some addicts will have to taper off of their drugs, but others will just go “cold turkey.” Detox is not treatment; it is just the first step addicts have to take before beginning a prescribed treatment program.

Detoxing is not easy. Some addicts will experience physical symptoms that feel awful because of the cravings the body has for the drug of choice. Every addict will detox in different amounts of time, based on their level of addiction, metabolism, and other characteristics. Common issues that arise during detox include depression, fatigue, seizures, sleep problems, and nausea. Doctors should be involved when addicts are detoxing.

Medications that Work

There are some medications that will help addicts during their treatment programs. They help make the behavioral therapies easier to manage. The medications also reduce the chances of relapse. Medications allow the brain to function well without the use of the addictive drug. The medications fight cravings and other unwanted behaviors that arise while in treatment. Some of the prescribed medications include Suboxone and Subutex (buprenorphine), which is used to fight opioid addictions to heroin and some prescription pain medications. Another commonly used prescription is methadone. Buprenorphine is often used in the short term because it makes withdrawal symptoms manageable.

Useful Behavioral Therapies

There are several behavioral therapies that are used during treatment, too. These therapies are designed to keep addicts on the path to health so they avoid relapse. Counselors help addicts recognize thought processes that trigger the desire to take drugs. They notice what causes their cravings. They also learn how to manage stress and work with people around them to stay sober.

Behavioral treatments fall into four categories:

  1. Cognitive behavioral treatment: This type of treatment involves recognizing, avoiding and coping with the triggers that can cause a desire to take drugs. Thoughts and reactions are the focus in this type of therapy.
  2. Group therapy: This type of therapy involves a group of people who are relative close in age and fighting addiction. People work together with a counselor to best manage their addictions and stay on the path to help. Many people benefit from knowing they are not alone in their fight to become sober.
  3. Receiving incentives: This type of therapy includes giving the addict incentives for working through addiction. Rewards are given when addicts attend counseling appointments and when they take their medications. Many are rewarded for avoiding drugs.
  4. Motivational questioning: This type of therapy is usually done once – at the beginning of treatment. Addicts are interviewed about their addictions and their desires to get well. The addict must be committed to success, or the therapies will not work.

If you have any questions or concerns about substance abuse treatment options for recovery, or if you are worried about an addiction, please contact us at 905-527-2042 or email at info@towardsrecovery.com.


Living in Recovery: Methods for Addicts

Posted on :  April 12th, 2016  |  By :  towardsrecovery

Once an addict has made it through the treatment process, recovery can be a long road. There are many issues that can create stress for the recovering addict and there are many coping skills to use. The methods are not proven to work for everyone, so it is helpful to have several tools to try.

Recovering drug addicts need to realize that there will be moments that will trigger the desire to use again. Recognizing those triggers is helpful to staying healthy. Addicts may have turned to drugs to fight off pain both physical and mental. They may have been used to calm down after arguing with a spouse or after a tough day at work. When addicts stop using drugs, the same problems are there, but it is important to find other methods to manage the negativity that comes with them.

It is easy to turn to drugs instead of working through stressful situations. Drug use begins as a tool to release stress. Since stress is a regular part of life, it is better to find other methods to relax. It is healthier to turn to exercise or meditation. Breathing exercises can also calm people who are regularly stressed. In reality, drug addiction actually creates more stress.

Having a collection of stress relieving strategies is one effective way to avoid falling back into the habit of drug abuse. These strategies do not work for everyone, but it does not hurt to try a few to see what works best for your situations in life.

For many people exercise is the most effective, simply because it offers so many benefits for emotional and physical well-being. Exercise affects the endorphins so the brain releases stressful chemicals.

One of the most effective forms of exercise for stress relief is yoga, which helps people also find balance in their lives. Another effective form of exercise is walking outside and enjoying the sensations.

Pairing exercise with meditation is also an effective way to relieve stress. If you cannot sit and meditate, there are several activities that can be meditative. Those include things like sipping on tea, relaxing to music, breathing in pleasant aromas, and lighting and focusing on a candle flame.

Some people will also practice visualization, like imagining a calming place, a favorite memory, or another moment that brings joy and relaxation. Many people will get a pet so they have something to focus on at the end of a long day. Pet therapy is a useful tool for managing stress, but before you commit to care for an animal, be sure you have the ability to do so.

Another useful tool for relaxation is the bath tub. Since stress tenses the muscles, many people will relax in a hot bath with epsom salts and essential oils. Be sure to read the instructions on how much oil to add and how much salt is good for the body.

Unfortunately for addicts, the triggers are all very real, and they pop-up at unexpected times. In order to avoid the triggers that cause drug cravings, it is a good idea to remove them from daily life. It is helpful to stay away from the old friends who did drugs or sold drugs to you. Instead, spend your time with the people who support your recovery. It is also a great idea to stay away from bars, even if alcohol is not your addiction. It could quickly become a new addiction that could trigger the desire for more drugs. Your old drug buddies could be hanging out at the bars, too.

It is helpful to share your recovery status when you are getting help for other medical issues. Your dentist and general practitioner should know your status prior to prescribing treatment for illness or other problems. Prescription drugs can also create problems, especially painkillers that are opioid based.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us at 905-527-2042 or email at info@towardsrecovery.com.


Drug Treatment Options

Posted on :  April 8th, 2016  |  By :  towardsrecovery

Once a drug addict has decided to seek treatment, they will need to decide what type of treatment will work best for them. Prior to making a decision, addicts should recognize that each treatment method works differently for each addict. So, one option might seem attractive, but it might not be effective. Fortunately, there are plenty of other options available.

Know Your Options

After the addict recognizes that there are many options, they need to investigate what will most likely work best. Drug addicts cannot simply snap their fingers and be immediately cured. The best drug treatment programs are individualized, because the one-size-fits-all design does not work well for everyone.

Find a Treatment Program that Works for You

The best treatment programs will teach addicts how to recover and how to live without drugs. Successful programs teach addicts how to return to a healthy lifestyle that includes living with family, interacting with friends, maintaining a career, and staying healthy. But, no program will be successful without the work of the addict and the dedication to recovery. So, top programs will help addicts understand the importance of learning to manage stress and they will do so by addressing the reason that addicts began their drug addiction. This can be painful for addicts to face.

Realize the Magic Pill Does Not Exist

Since there is no magic pill that will treat addiction, addicts need to recognize that it takes time to recover. The time it takes to recover is often relative to the degree of the addiction. People who have been taking drugs for many years will have a longer recovery period than those who have been addicted for a few months. But, both will require follow-up treatment after the original treatment time has ended. During this time, the addict will have to maintain their commitment to wellness.

Addicts need to know that the treatment center is not the only option for them. Although it is a powerful option for addicts, the treatment center can be used in conjunction with other options. Some people will perform best in detox programs or rehab facilities with overnight stays, others do better working with regular appointments with counselors or social workers. Some have better luck working with their clergy. Some need a combination of options for real success.

Find Help in Several Places

Along with drug addiction, patients seeking help should also get help in other areas of their lives that are causing problems. For example, depression often accompanies addiction, so that should be treated, too. Addiction treatment should also be accompanied with lesson about lifestyle changes so the addict can maintain a successful recovery.

Where to Find Support

To not fall back into the troubles of addiction, it is important for recovering addicts to have a support system. It is important to have a support system with several layers that can be accessed at any time.

If one of the layers is unavailable, another one can be used. Those layers should include friends and family who will be the first line of defense. The next layer should include a group of friends who are sober. This group can be found at a church, a health club, or even at a volunteer agency. These are people who can have fun without the use of drugs or alcohol. Some addicts will even choose to move into a facility that is for people who are recovering from drug addiction. These sober homes are a great alternative for people who have drug addicts living in their homes.

Another helpful thing to do is attend support-group meetings. In most towns, there are meetings happening on a daily basis. Whether you attend a meeting for alcoholics or drug addicts, they will all be helpful. The fellow attendees will usually have tips and experiences to share and you can also benefit from sharing with them.

If you have any questions or concerns about drug treatment options for recovery, or if you are worried about an addiction, please contact us at 905-527-2042 or email at info@towardsrecovery.com.


Drug Addiction Options: Taking the First Steps

Posted on :  April 6th, 2016  |  By :  towardsrecovery

One of the most difficult things to do with a drug addiction is get treatment. Many drug addicts do not recognize that they have a problem because they are so caught up in their addiction. The vicious circle of addiction leads them to believe they are just fine. The change that is involved in getting help is a difficult task for addicts to consider.

The First Step

The decision to get help is the first step. Anytime that change is involved, people can get stressed. But, people who have the stress of drug addiction in their lives can experience even more stress. Before addicts make up their minds to get help, there are several considerations to make. Recovery takes serious commitment.

Understanding the Change Will Happen

Addicts and their family members need to recognize the major changes that will happen with sobriety. The changes will affect social lives and what addicts do in their spare time. They will also need to learn how to manage the stress that comes with saying no to drugs. Addicts will also have to rethink who they are and who they want to be when they actually stop taking drugs.

This can be a challenge for anyone, let alone for someone who has to make their decisions while battling addiction. Fortunately, there have been plenty of addicts who have fought through addiction and there will be plenty more to come. Those who have fought their addictions and recovered have left behind numerous tips.

Pay Attention to the Addiction

The first tip that addicts need to do is pay attention to their addiction. Before they can fight their addictions, they need to know what it consists of, so tracking how much they use is vital. Along with how much they use, they need to look at when they use. This will give addicts and their counselors the data they need to see if the addicts have actually recovered. It allows the addicts to really see how much drugs affect their lives.

Look at the Pros and Cons

It is also important for addicts to look at the pros and cons that come with quitting and staying on drugs. It can be helpful to work with loved ones to build the lists. The list should consider costs, time, emotions, careers, and everything that is affected by using and ending use of drugs. Along with this list, addicts should also look at the important things in life. For most addicts, the realization that drugs have taken over the top spot is shocking. So asking this question can be eye-opening. When they see that their families, careers, and joy is replaced with drugs, they begin to see that they need to get help.

Look at Top Focus in Life

Once addicts recognize that they have misplaced their focus onto drugs, they are often ready to talk to someone. The best choice is someone the addict trusts. This person will be open-minded to the discussion and comfortable enough to tell the truth. The next step is to talk about change and what could be used to create successful change. They can also discuss what possible roadblocks could occur.

If you have any questions about the steps towards recovery, the counselors at Towards Recovery are available to help. Reach out to us at 905-527-2042. Our counselors specialize in helping everyone suffering from addictions to heroin and other opioids. We assess the problem and work hard to help addicts recover successfully. Our treatment programs include intervention in an addict’s lifestyle while adding a psycho-social and pharmacological program individualized to meet each addict’s needs.


What Makes a Good Inpatient Program

Posted on :  March 28th, 2016  |  By :  towardsrecovery

Towards Recovery Clinics specializes in treating opioid addiction with methadone. This treatment program has been successful for many patients. But, there are some patients who need more help. Fortunately, inpatient programs are available for heroin and other opioid addicts.

When shopping for a high quality inpatient program, there are five elements that must happen at the program. Without these features, the inpatient program might not serve the needs of the heroin addict and help create a successful recovery.

Unique Treatment Plans

The first necessary element is that the program must create treatment plans for each individual patient. The needs of patients differ based on their ages, genders, years of addiction, and health histories. Without a customized program, patients will not have the successes they hope for and after spending time in an inpatient program, most patients do not want to return for relapses. A strong program will evaluate the patient’s needs and create a plan that fits all of the patient’s unique needs. The plan is reevaluated throughout the stay to see if any changes are necessary as the patient moves through the recovery steps.

Detailed Record Keeping

The record keeping at the treatment facility must be extensive and precise. Charting the course of recovery is vital to the success of the patient. The physician and other caregivers that are charged with each patient need to record every step of the treatment plan. This way, the caregivers can see if changes need to be made and what works. With quality records, caregivers are able to decide if a plan is even necessary. Patients should be able to see their own records to see their progress. It is also important that the records remain private so the patient does not have to worry about the stigma attached to being in an inpatient drug addiction center.

Scientifically Proven Treatment Methods

Another necessary feature is that the caregivers use treatments that have been scientifically proven. These treatments include methadone treatments, as well as psychological therapy like talk therapy and behavioral treatments. If a physician or caregivers cannot explain the medical benefits of the treatment, then it should not be used. There should be licensed physicians in charge of the treatment. They should specialize in psychiatry, pharmacology, or drug treatment – especially because the prescriptions associated with drug treatment programs can interact with brain chemistry and other drugs.

Trustworthy Caregivers

The treatment center should be comfortable and friendly. The patient should be able to trust the caregivers because they have the knowledge and credentials that inspire the trust. They should be able to help with detox programs and everything that occurs afterwards. When patients are comfortable (without being too comfortable), they are more likely to recover and not need to be readmitted.

Quality Discharge Plans

The final necessity for a quality program is having a treatment program that continues after the patient returns home. The challenge for the patient is getting back into a healthy lifestyle, so it can be useful for patients to have plans of action before they leave. In many cases, patients need to relearn how to insert themselves back into society. They will need to know what to do in trigger situations. They will need to know how to get back to work and how to get back to their families. Many struggle with meeting new friends, who are drug free and healthy to be around. A quality treatment program will often involve referral services and alumni program for men and women who have been discharged. Good treatment centers want to see their patients succeed and they will offer support through all of the stages.

If you have any questions or concerns about methadone as a tool for recovery, or if you are worried about an addiction, please contact us at 905-527-2042 or email at info@towardsrecovery.com.


Find the Best Addiction Treatment Program for a Loved One

Posted on :  February 1st, 2016  |  By :  towardsrecovery

Drug addiction and recovery is not just a Canadian thing. It is an epidemic all around the world. The problems that come with addiction and recovery do not just affect the addict; the friends and family of the addict are affected, too. So, what should friends and family do when they need to help a loved one who is struggling with addiction?

One of the best things to do is find professional help. This is challenging for friends and family who have never had to deal with addiction and recovery. They may wonder what the options are and what the best treatment is for their loved one. Here is a quick tutorial on types of treatment and how to pick the right place for a loved one:

What types of treatment programs are available?

  • Outpatient programs
  • Inpatient programs
  • Residential programs
  • Counseling

The different types of programs all work in similar ways. By using a variety of different techniques based on the addiction, they strive to remove the addictive substance from the body and teach the addict how to cope with life after addiction. Some will use independent and group counseling and some will use drug therapy, like methadone to break deadly addictions.

How to Help Your Loved One

Once you recognized that a loved one has an addiction, it is best to remain calm. Addicts will notice if a friend or family member seems uneasy. Before you make any rash decisions, it is best to talk to a professional, like a therapist who specializes in drug addiction. When it comes to helping an addict, education is the key to success. The more you know, the more you can help.

Many addicts will not want to talk about the addiction, so it is important to be able to talk to your loved one. There are several methods of intervening successfully with an addict and there are several things that friends and family can do that will close off any lines of communication. Before you make an attempt at an intervention, work with a counselor who can help you learn what to do and what to say.

Things to Consider

It is also a good idea to visit different treatment programs in your area. There are treatment programs that are designed for 28 days or up to 90 days before releasing the recovered addict. Your loved one might not need anything that long – an outpatient program might be best. Different drug addictions require more work to fight, so speaking to a representative from the different programs is a good way to judge what would be best for your loved one. There are studies that have shown that longer programs are more successful than the short-term ones.

You will also want to consider the location of the program. Your loved one might succeed in a center close to home, or you might know that your loved one needs to be far away from home for success. A treatment center close to home does add convenience for friends and family, but it could also put your loved one in an uncomfortable predicament if someone he or she knows works there or checks in. It is important to be flexible in deciding where to get help.

It is also important to choose a facility that is well-maintained. You will want to visit so you can see how clean the facility is and how regularly rooms are cleaned. Check out the meal schedules and what is served. It is also helpful to look for different accreditation programs to see what standards the treatment center meets. It is also a good idea to ask the representatives from the treatment center about their programs for addicts.

At Towards Recovery Clinics, we serve heroin addicts with our methadone programs. We are always happy to discuss options with friends and family members before they decide to intervene with an addict.

Contact us at 905-527-2042 or email at info@towardsrecovery.com with questions.


Getting the Most Out of Rehab Center

Posted on :  January 11th, 2016  |  By :  towardsrecovery

For some addicts, treatment centers like Towards Recovery Clinic are the best choice to manage their addictions. For others, a rehabilitation center is an important step.

Addicts who need the type of help that requires overnight stays in a rehab center often do not realize that they need it. This means that friends, family, and treatment centers like ours need to help them recognize the type of care they need. Rehab centers offer so much more to recovery than most addicts would ever imagine.

Recovering from addiction in a rehab center is one of the most difficult things that any addict can do. Most addicts never realize that they need this on their own.

In most cases, family member stage interventions to tell their loved ones that need to go to rehab or else. The ultimatum is also not always enough, but it can turn even the most hardened addicts into accepting responsibility by checking themselves into their local centers. It can be helpful for addicts to know what they are getting into when they decide to take that major step to get help.

Addicts will quickly see that they are not alone in their endeavor to get well. Rehab centers are almost always close to being full.

For most addicts, making friends in rehab can help them be successful in their journey to sobriety. Having friends with common problems can make it easier to share weaknesses and worries. Family members and outside friends do not usually understand what it is like to be an addict, but a fellow recovering addict sure does.

Before you decide to make friends in rehab, it is wise to take time to be sure the people you want to befriend are the people that will be good for you and your recovery.

While addicts are in rehab, they get to take a break from everyday life on the outside. Addicts who try to recover on their own have difficulty managing real life and their recovery. Withdrawal from addictive substances is physically and mentally challenging and pairing it with work, family, and the rest of everyday life is nearly impossible.

At a rehab center, the staff is trained to help their patients manage the challenges that comes with withdrawal. Detox is vital to the future success of the addict and without it, the body will continue to crave the substance. At a rehab center, addicts can focus on their recovery rather than their families and careers. It offers an opportunity to relax and take a break from the life that brought you to the narcotic in the first place.

In the rehab center, there will be a variety of different treatment methods that will be presented to the addict. The treatments will begin as soon as the detoxification process begins.

The providers at the rehab center will provide ideas regarding detox, then they will offer more to maintain the sobriety. The idea of taking each day one at a time is necessary to stay healthy in the rehab center.

Providers at the rehab center are trained to help patients but not develop friendships or share too much personal information. They do not want their patients to become attached to them and vice versa. But, they will suggest plenty of ideas. Some will sound brilliant and some might not fit with the addict’s lifestyle. There is nothing wrong with trying the different ideas to see if they could work outside of the treatment center.

Addicts never know what they will really need when they eventually leave the center and live their lives in the real world.

If you or your loved ones need consultation or treatment, reach our main office via telephone at 905-527-2042 or email at info@towardsrecovery.com.


Helping Seniors Avoid Trouble with Opioid Prescriptions

Posted on :  December 3rd, 2015  |  By :  towardsrecovery

When we think of opioid addiction, we should no longer think of just heroin. The addiction to pain medication that contains opioids has reached epidemic levels. In the last 20 years, more than four times as many people have become addicted to opioids that were prescribed by physicians. Sadly, senior citizens are having a significant issue with opioid addiction.

The biggest problem with opioid medication is the fact that it is relatively easy to get more than one prescription for the painkillers. Doctors and pharmacies do not talk to each other, so they do not know if a patient is getting multiple prescriptions from different doctors and different pharmacies. Governments are trying to create laws that would give doctors and pharmacies what they need to know if patients are working the system. Laws would end patients’ ability to “pharmacy hop” or “doctor shop.”

The other problem with prescription medications is the cost. In some cases, the drugs cost more than the care provided by the physicians who prescribe them. As elderly patients rely on government systems for their drug expenses and living expenses, future generations could be greatly affected by the cost of medications. As people are living longer, due to medications and healthier lifestyles, the cost of health care will only grow and fall on the shoulders of future generations.

The addiction to pain medication could be managed by reducing the amount of money that seniors (and other patients) can spend on them in the first place. There are other ways to manage pain that do not result in addictions. In reality, countries could lose billions of dollars simply through filling prescriptions for patients who have any form of pain. It is vital that governments and medical agencies learn how to reduce these costs. Creating affordable treatment programs is a step in the right direction.

In the United States, Medicare is the program that funds prescriptions for seniors. It is important that this system alerts physicians and pharmacies if a patient has more than one prescription for expensive medications. Medicaid does this and there are other private insurance carriers in the United States that do this, too.

Health care policies need to identify people who have a history of abusing pain medication. Instead of continuing to feed their addictions, they would be directed to a treatment program. Seniors would be allowed to find a provider, but the health insurance company would have to approve the provider. The health insurance company would monitor the prescriptions and how often they are filled. The companies would set limits on refills and doctors would be alerted if patients are attempting to go elsewhere for the fix. The problem in the United States with enacting procedures like this is with the privacy laws about health care. In no way can the alerts and monitoring system reveal private information about patients.

  • It is important that senior citizens be protected from abusing medications, especially opioids. In many cases, seniors might not even be aware that they are taking a drug that is easy to abuse. They simply follow the instructions of the health care provider they trust and their brain chemistry does the rest. To protect them these ideas need to be enacted:
    • Seniors would receive approval for their preferred physicians and pharmacies, unless those places have histories with helping patients get the opioids they need.
    • The health care beneficiaries would be alerted to any changes that their loved ones made, especially when those seniors are taking opioid medications.
    • Seniors are monitored based on their history of prescription medications to see if they are at-risk for abusing prescriptions like Vicodin or oxycontin.
    • Patients who are in hospice would be exempt.
    • Government needs to create data sharing programs, especially for patients with issues with pain.

If you have any questions about treatment options, please contact us at Towards Recovery Clinics.


Can Opioid Addiction Be Managed with Psychedelic Drugs

Posted on :  November 25th, 2015  |  By :  towardsrecovery

Opioid addiction is a serious problem all over North America. In the United States, researchers are working on a variety of different ways to help those who have developed an addiction from OxyContin, heroin, or Vicodin. For many years, rehab and methadone have been the standards of treatment. But, some addicts have not had much success or they have needed the treatments for an excessively long time. To replace the standard treatment, researchers are looking at the effects of psychedelic substances, specifically a substance called ibogaine to fight opioid addictions.

How Many People Are Addicted to Opioids

The United States Center for Disease Control claims that more than 2 million people have an addiction to prescription and hard drugs containing opioids. This problem has created epidemics in some of the state in the US. Just a few years ago in the US, there were over 24,000 deaths from taking heroin or prescription opioid medications. This problem needs to be dealt with because the troubles in the US are also happening in Canada.

What Happens During a Standard Treatment Program

The current detoxification program usually involves the addicts spending time in a supervised program, which can last a week or longer. Then, the recovering addicts receive a prescription to methadone or a similar drug that manages withdrawal symptoms. Some have to manage an abstinence program that can be painful. In the US, some treatment centers are seeing 25 percent success rate and some are seeing about 90 percent of addicts return for a second round of treatment. These unfortunate numbers are forcing the healthcare community to look for another treatment and in some cases the treatment is in the form of a psychedelic drug.

How Does Ibogaine Work

The drug that is showing up in several studies is from a West African plant. Ibogaine is found in the root bark. The other psychedelic drug that is showing up is psilocybin, which is commonly found in psychedelic mushrooms. These two drugs can help people manage their addictions to both smoking and/or alcohol. In a small study of 15 chronic smokers, 12 of them successfully quit using psilocybin. In another small study, a group of people reduced their drinking of alcoholic beverages decrease by 50 percent.

How Was It Discovered to Help

Ibogaine was not a drug that was on the minds of researchers. It was classified decades ago as a Schedule 1 substance because it had no medical use and was highly addictive. In the 1960s, a man addicted to heroin tried ibogaine. After taking it for the first time, he realized that he no longer felt the need for opioids. Six of his addicted friends also tried it and all but one quit heroin. He has continued to advocate for the medical community to begin a formal research program to see if the drug could be used around the globe.

Why Is It Not Approved for Use

The problem with ibogaine is that is a controlled substance that is illegal to own and use. There were some underground studies conducted on it, and some of the subjects died. Eventually, the National Institute on Drug Abuse did decide to research it, but the study never occurred because there was not enough money.

Should It Be Regulated for Detox?

Currently, there are several organizations that are pushing for a real study on ibogaine. Opiate addictions are not easy to treat, so specialists need to have several options at their fingertips. Addicts can be desperate for something to help them and ibogaine could be the answer to many problems. There are currently only three medications that have been approved for treatment in the United States and not all of them work for every patient.

If you have any questions about treatment options, please contact us at Towards Recovery Clinics via email:  info@towardsrecovery.com or phone: 905-527-2042.




Who We Serve ?

  • Individuals using/abusing street narcotics (e.g. heroin).
  • Patients abusing prescription narcotics(i.e., Codeine, Talwin, Percocet/Percodan, Dilaudid, Morphine or Demerol, et cetera).
  • Individuals displaying any of the following behaviours: Compulsive drug use or drug seeking/craving.
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