It’s hard to imagine a world where opioids didn’t have such a tight grip on our communities, and it’s become increasingly difficult to ignore its negative reach in the country and beyond. The opioid crisis throughout the United States has become a talking point for politicians. While they’ve made some headway in pressuring doctors to prescribe fewer prescription opioids, it’s only allowed another market to grow – the black market.
With the rise in opioid use in the state of Florida, opioid treatment is in more demand than ever. South Florida, and areas like Miami-Dade County, have always been known for their high-quality treatment catering to addiction. While the sunshine and near-perfect year-round weather may lure in some, the quality of care is what will bring in the others. Getting off opioids is one of the most challenging periods a person can face, and knowing a dedicated team has your back means the world.
What’s led to this opioid frenzy in states like Florida is in the late ‘90s, medical professionals were advised by pharmaceutical reps their drugs were safe to use for pain. While opioids are beneficial for those dealing with long-term chronic pain, it’s a little unnecessary to prescribe a potent opioid like oxycodone for minor acute pain. Although we’re equipped with that knowledge now, doctors then trusted these reps and began prescribing at a tremendous rate.
Once physicians and government officials saw the addiction rates spiking, they implemented more stringent means of obtaining the medication. Even with those in place, it led those already addicted to seeking the drugs on the street, leading to a massive spike in heroin use and overdoses. Today, heroin and another more potent opioid, fentanyl, have become significant issues and are causing more and more people to check into opioid treatment.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), in 2018 alone, 68 percent of the 4,698 overdose fatalities in Florida were caused by opioids, translating to a total of 3,189 deaths. In Miami-Dade County, the National Institute of Health (NIH) reported a 35 percent increase in opioid-related deaths between 2015 and 2016 and a staggering 826 percent increase in heroin-associated deaths between 2011 and 2016.
All current and former addicts can attest to the rigors of overcoming opioid addiction, but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible. Fortunately, opioid treatment in Miami-Dade County offers an evidence-based approach and the latest in addiction care, as well as perfect weather and a serene environment that adds to the experience. These programs are focused specifically on the person’s most pressing needs. Let’s take a look at opioid addiction treatment options in Miami-Dade County.
If you’re seeking treatment options to overcome opioid addiction, you may be familiar with the term medication-assisted treatment (MAT). Medication-assisted treatment is typically reserved for those with long histories of relapse, but depending on the circumstance, it might be right for you.
Medication-assisted treatment is designed to treat opioid use disorder by using other opioids like Suboxone or methadone. It helps the individual to cope with cravings or persistent withdrawal symptoms. It’s highly beneficial and used by various treatment centers in Miami-Dade County in conjunction with therapy to manage an opioid use disorder (OUD).
MAT is also an extremely effective means of preventing opioid overdose, and all of the medications used by treatment centers are approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) has been proven to help people overcome addiction. When you add another solution like MAT, it means the person will address their addiction and learn how it affects all aspects of their health.
Those recovering from chronic heroin, fentanyl, or prescription opioid abuse will benefit from this treatment. As mentioned above, it’s an ideal choice for someone who chronically relapses and wants to end their use of illicit drugs or prescription medications.
MAT can help with the following:
- Make opioid withdrawal more manageable and comfortable
- Help those with opioid cravings manage their symptoms and learn strategies to cope with their triggers
- Reduce the individual’s chances of relapsing, which often leads to overdosing or fatalities
- Keep the person committed to their recovery plan and work one day at a time to overcome their opioid addiction
Does Medication-Assisted-Treatment Work?
Medication-assisted treatment has been proven effective, according to SAMHSA. The federal agency has shown this particular treatment approach has increased participation, patient survival, increased retention rates in treatment, and helped reduce illicit opioid use.
Despite its proven success, SAMHSA describes it as an underused approach. There are some concerns about fighting fire with fire, meaning using opioids to battle opioid addiction. Some feel that by using one drug to end one addiction will result in starting another.
Despite the disagreement, SAMHSA disagrees and states that these medications help alleviate withdrawal symptoms and psychological cravings that are caused by chemical imbalances in our bodies. Medication-assisted treatment programs offer safe and controlled levels of the drug to overcome opioid abuse.
The medications administered by doctors are weak opioids, meaning those who take them will not experience the same intoxicating properties they did when using more potent opioids. Under federal law, those who undergo MAT must receive vocational guidance, medical care, and other services to help with their recovery.
If you believe medication-assisted treatment might be right for your recovery, it’s available in Miami-Dade County. Fortunately, South Florida is one of the best options when it comes to addiction care. Many of those who move to Miami-Dade County for treatment find themselves staying once care ends. There is a vast recovery community ready to help you. Let’s take a look at how Miami-Dade County has responded to the crisis.
Unfortunately, the state of Florida made headlines for all the wrong reasons. South Florida was notorious for its “pill mills” in the early 2000s. You could visit one of these facilities and see license plates from all over the country coming down to doctor-shop, which played a vital role in the increased use of opioid drugs in the country and Miami-Dade County.
Miami-Dade County and the state worked tirelessly to fix their image and cracked down on doctors that were taking part in this awful act. In 2018, Florida brought in legislation that created F-FORCSE, a prescription drug monitoring program, limiting the number of opioid prescriptions physicians can write. It’s geared toward reducing opioid addiction and bringing education about the terror these drugs can cause when misused.
Miami has done an exceptional job battling opioid addiction and has become a highly sought-out place to live. Make sure to get on the phone today to find out more about opioid treatment in Miami-Dade County.