The advantages to certification Diplomas on the walls of your financial advisor, paper accreditations taped by the register at your favorite nail salon, and an alphabet’s worth of letters appearing behind the name of your medical providers: These things are more than just a “thumbs up” from a higher power giving people the go-ahead to practice in a particular profession. It’s the reason you can trust these professionals. It’s the reason you can have peace of mind. But the truth is, we hardly ever think about it.
Nearly half of opioid misuse starts with a friend or family member’s prescription It’s not unheard of that drug abuse often begins at home. After all, we know the statistic and that substance abuse is a factor of both family environment and family DNA and even laypeople know the cautionary tale of the kid who “learned it from watching” his father. But when it comes to opiates, the danger for misuse and overdose is even greater.
Front-page attention makes addiction all the more difficult The latest data suggests that about 85% of people who get sober from opioids will relapse within a year. For alcohol, the stat varies anywhere from 30-70%. In our field, we focus so much on celebrating the decision to seek treatment we might be tempted to ignore the ugly truth of relapse.
The great leveling of the opioid crisis One of the most important things the opioid crisis is teaching us is that substance abuse is no longer the domain of the “other.” We can’t dismiss those who suffer from opioid misuse disorder as “different” from ourselves. We can’t blame the victims as easily as we might be tempted to with other types of drugs. Opioid misuse disorder can strike anyone: rich, poor, black, white, city, country, young, or old. This more or less indiscriminate ravaging of families and communities across the socioeconomic spectrum is part of what makes the problem an epidemic. And it’s also what makes this issue so alarming: It can happen to you.
The path to recovery may start with a click “No robot will ever do my job as well as me!” come the cries of construction workers, linemen, and orthopedic surgeons—well, at least in popular culture. Whether or not it’s a daily acclimation from these—or any other—groups is uncertain. Nevertheless, humans have been contemplating the idea of automation and other technology overtaking their lives since even before Henry Ford thought up the assembly line. But surely tech has no place in addiction treatment, right?