Waismann Method, one of the world’s most successful opioid detox programs, has released some sobering statistics. When comparing the number of patients in the first part of 2017 to the same months of 2018, and the drugs they seek treatment from, the center found a 233% hike in detoxification for Suboxone dependence and other buprenorphine-based medications. This rise in addiction to drugs used to treat opioid use disorder raises significant concerns.
On the surface, the idea that people are seeking treatment, including MAT, may seem like a positive trend. Opioid addiction kills 115 people in the United States each day. Anytime a substance user enters or seeks drug treatment; it should be thought of as a positive move. However, maintenance drugs such as Suboxone and Methadone does not necessarily solve the patient’s opioid dependence problems. Instead, it can prolong them.
When an opioid user enters Medically Assisted Treatment (MAT) therapy, they do so under the supervision of a medical professional. Typically, the patient is given replacement drugs such as methadone or Suboxone. Although both substances are opioid narcotics, they are meant to prevent the withdrawal symptoms, illicit buying and the spread of infectious diseases – All significant considerations. People fear and try to avoid withdrawal symptoms at any cost so that MAT medications might become an immediate-attractive option. However, since these maintenance drugs are opioids themselves, when patients decide to discontinue their use they often experience similar withdrawal symptoms to those of heroin and fentanyl.
In addition to the impressive rise of patients seeking detox treatment for MAT-related medications, the team also found some other interesting statistics that align with the current trends associated with opioid addiction. The average age of patients who entered the Waismann Method Rapid Detox program in 2018 for Suboxone detoxification, was 50 years old. While this statistic is disheartening, it’s not surprising that opioid addiction in older adults is also on the rise.
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