Addiction treatment providers and law enforcement officials in Fresno County recently met to publicly address one of the most serious issues they have seen in the area: substance abuse and addiction.
Fresno appears to be following the national pattern when it comes to drug addiction and/or misuse – drugs derived from opioids are linked to the vast majority of the cases of substance abuse.
A group of addiction treatment professionals who have extensive experience working in drug detox centers in the area used the opportunity to highlight that they have been witnessing an increase in the number of Fresno residents struggling with substance use disorders for more than a decade now.
They explained that majority of Fresno residents who have entered an inpatient addiction treatment center share the fact that their chemical dependence started after they were prescribed and began using potent prescription opioid painkillers, such as OxyContin.
The local team of addiction specialists also stated that while cases of substance use disorders in the area almost always start to develop among teenagers and young adults, people of all ages can be and have been affected.
Making addiction treatment work
During the occasion, several addiction specialists brought forth the idea that they believe addiction treatment does work, however, the public needs to be informed about the available options and alternatives in order to help themselves or their loved ones.
One of the participants in the discussion panel, Dr. Mike Habibe, a first-response doctor, emphasized that education about pain management needs to be the first step taken if local officials truly intend to curb substance abuse in Fresno County.
He said that most people need to get rid of the preconceived idea that they should or will be completely free of pain.
If individuals think they will be able to never feel pain or always take a pill to stop the pain “they will be in big trouble” he said.
Holistic approaches to treating substance use disorders were also promoted in the event. Addiction specialists highlighted that unusual, alternative practices such as art or music therapy can be beneficial for individuals in recovery.
One Fresno County doctor explained that… (continue reading)