Alcoholism and drug addiction are two very common sicknesses in America today. According to the most recent study of addiction done in 2019, about 20 million people in the United States suffer from a substance abuse disorder. Abusing and becoming addicted to substances, such as opioids or alcohol, means taking medication in higher than prescribed amounts, drinking excessively and too often, using non prescription drugs, and going out of your way to cure a craving to get high or drunk. This means putting anything at risk in order to satisfy the body's want to become intoxicated. Often when people suffer from these addictions, they will pay any amount of money, perform any type of act, or do whatever they can to get ahold of drugs or alcohol. This often leads to family disfunction, loss of friendships, or loss of your own sense of who you are.
In order to combat these addictions, there are prescription medications abusers can be prescribed to help with their addiction. Naltrexone can be used to treat alcoholism drug abuse and suboxone helps opioid users ease off of opioids. Naltrexone works by blocking the receptors that make you feel pleasure and euphoria when drinking or taking opioids. Suboxone, on the other hand, acts as an opioid in low doses to trick the opioid receptors into thinking they are receiving a high sensation from drugs such as oxycodone, heroin, or morphine. The user will still experience a slight high but it would be nearly impossible to overdose on suboxone as opposed to alternative prescription drugs because this medicine has an endpoint where opioid effects level off and the user cannot get any higher, even if the dose is increased. Both of these medications can be prescribed by doctors to patients who are willing to seek help for their addictions. It is so important that these medications are easily accessible because addiction is such a common sickness in our country. These two medications can be huge steps in slowing down the opioid overdose epidemic and sever alcoholism and help people turn their lives around.