There are many paths to opioid addiction — legal and illegal — but no matter how you got there, intense cravings and withdrawal symptoms make it virtually impossible to fight addiction on your own. Opioid addiction treatment is available from Dr. Gregory Haley at Alianza Healthy Thinking. The doctor uses Suboxone® treatment to stop cravings and withdrawal symptoms, while also providing ongoing therapy to ensure you have the support you need for long-term recovery. To get help with your opioid addiction, call the office in Scottdale, GA and Atlanta, GA or book an appointment online.
Opioids are a class of drugs that include prescription medications and street drugs. Heroin is the best-known illegal opioid, while fentanyl, oxycodone (OxyContin®), hydrocodone (Vicodin®), codeine, and morphine are some of the most common prescription opioids.
As a group, opioids are powerful painkillers that are very addictive and dangerous. At low doses, opioids make you feel sleepy, while higher doses slow your breathing and stop your heart.
Since an opioid addiction drives you to take ever-increasing amounts, it’s easy to cross the line into a deadly overdose.
You first start taking opioids because they make you feel good by relieving pain and triggering your brain’s reward center, which causes a feeling of euphoria.
Addiction happens as you slowly build up a tolerance to the amount you take, so you need to keep increasing your dose to feel the same effect.
As you take larger doses, and the longer you use opioids, physical changes occur in your brain. Opiates change your brain’s reward system in ways that make you compulsively crave the drug while ignoring its potential harm.
A medication-assisted treatment combines medication with behavioral therapy or counseling to help you kick an opioid addiction and stay on the road to recovery.
This approach has proven to be very successful because you receive medication that normalizes your brain chemistry and relieves cravings. In the meantime, therapy helps you learn to resist opioids.
Dr. Haley uses Suboxone to treat opioid addictions. Suboxone consists of two medications, buprenorphine and naloxone, that control your craving for opioids, diminish withdrawal symptoms, and block the effect of opioids.
Your Suboxone treatment is administered in the office in a gradual process that requires ongoing medical supervision from Dr. Haley to ensure your health and monitor your progress.
The first stage of Suboxone management helps you withdraw from opioids. You begin taking Suboxone while you’re in a moderate state of withdrawal. During this time, Dr. Haley carefully manages your medication as you stop taking opioids and continue taking Suboxone.
The next step is called a maintenance phase, which is when withdrawal stops, and you no longer have cravings. You’ll continue to take Suboxone and begin counseling.
The final step begins when Dr. Haley determines you can safely stop taking Suboxone, and he gradually reduces your dose. If you start having cravings again, your program can be adjusted to help you resist going back to opioids.
The time it takes to progress through the different stages depends on each patient. You can count on the doctor to work closely with you and provide the support you need.
To get immediate opioid addiction treatment, call Alianza Healthy Thinking or book an appointment online.