How Online Tools Can Help Fight an Opioid Addiction
With the sheer number of people who have fallen victim to the opioid epidemic, friends and family may be left with many unanswered questions and feelings of helpless about what to do when they notice suspect their loved one may have an addiction. The abuse of opioids is not a recent phenomenon as it has been a prevalent concern starting around the turn of the century, making headlines since the nineties with thousands of victims who have perished from its misuse. While traditional treatment methods can still be considered effective, those who suffer from opioid addiction and are looking to get onto the road recovery can take advantage of the technological advances that make the process easier.
The challenge with opioids is that they are available in various forms, with some of the most accessible being prescription drugs. Fentanyl, morphine, codeine, hydrocodone, and other synthetic, man-made opioids can be easily found in the medicine cabinets of everyday people. While the intended purpose of these formulations has been pain relief for patients suffering from a variety of physical ailments or discomfort, an unintended side effect for many of these medications has resulted from its highly addictive qualities.
Because opioids are prescribed routinely following both major and minor surgeries, as well as for managing conditions that cause chronic pain, it should come as no surprise that the soothing anesthetizing properties could potentially become addictive. A major step on the road to recovery is recognizing signs an addiction and taking action before the issue escalates. Some of the warning signs include patients who do not follow their doctor’s instructions, demonstrations of mood swings, voluntary isolation, questionable hygiene practices, changes in appetite, and any significant changes in one’s typical routine following certain types of opioid use.
Traditionally those suffering from opioid addiction would likely need to depend on the intervention of loved ones or community members once a situation has grown beyond their control. Another potential solution has been to admit oneself to professional rehabilitation. While those are still effective methods, those recovering from opioid addiction can also take advantage of the most powerful form of communication now available at the tap of a screen, click of a mouse, or push of a button, for even more ways to access different types of opioid treatment options.
One of the most common pathways to addiction is not necessarily from obtaining the infamous illegal forms of opioids such as heroin. Oftentimes a patient may begin using a prescribed opioid responsibility but may find a low dosage to feel ineffective or inadequate. With the world wide web at a patient’s disposal, he or she can easily explore alternative medications for pain relief, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, that are less addictive. There are also several drug-free methods to explore. Whether a patient is interested in high-tech treatments such as those that utilize electrical signals and radio waves, surgical procedures, localized injections of anesthesia there is a wealth of information available.
When somebody is suffering through an addiction it can become tempting to become physically isolated and cut off from the world in general. Today, online forums can help prevent that from happening. Dedicated websites not only allow users to discuss and get support for virtually any topic that comes to mind, but many even allow users to post in an anonymous format if desired. This can be useful for individuals who are more private and may feel hesitant to share their struggle with friends and family who know them personally and can be done on forums specifically aimed at drug rehabilitation, or in general online Forums with user-generated content.