As a heroin addict on and off for 35 years, I have found it takes many months, if not years, for one’s mind to recover from opiate use. During that time, the craving to use is extremely high. we deal with fatigue, low energy and recurring depression. The longer heroin addiction is active, the longer the recovery lasts. The challenge is greater for a patient using pain medication to mask underlining physical and psychological issues.
The problem now is that doctors are closely monitored for pain medication prescribing, opioid prescriptions are more difficult to find – even for those with chronic pain. The new state regulations are pushing addicts to heroin which is cheap, strong and laced with Fentanyl. The heroin addiction rate is up because the delivery systems are far more sophisticated than ever before and easily available in the suburbs.
In my view, Suboxone or naltrexone should be the treatment of choice. In some cases, a Suboxone certified physician is limited to 100 patients and there are not enough certified physicians to meet demand. Naltrexone can reduce a substantial portion of the Suboxone patient load who require long-term Suboxone treatment. Enabling doctors to avoid long-term treatment to open the doors to new patients with heroin addiction.
rehab for heroin addicts is not rocket science. Family doctors know their patients better than addiction experts. Why not let Family doctors prescribe Suboxone with strict standards of practice.