Facts And Misconceptions About Drug Abuse
It is obvious that these days substance abuse disorders are a critical problem in the United States. It can be hard to differentiate myth from fact because there is so much information out there. So we are going to go through some of the common ideas about drug use and talk about what is true or not.
Substance Abuse Is As Common As Diabetes
21 million people in the United States have substance abuse disorders or meet the rules for it. That is about 8 percent of the population and is about level with how many people have diabetes.
Opioid Overdoses Have Increased Four Times
This is actually true, between 1999 and 2014 overdoses due to opioid use increased four-fold. This is usually blamed on doctors overprescribing pain medication and eventually causing the opioid epidemic. People ended up using heroin in place of prescription painkillers once they were too hard to get and they were addicted.
Misuse vs. Abuse
Substance misuse and substance abuse don’t really have a difference. Misuse is used when people don’t use drugs properly or the way they are intended. That means taking a higher dosage of medication than is prescribed or sharing pills. This also constitutes abuse, so they are really the same thing.
Saying substance misuse is meant to be less shameful or embarrassing than saying substance abuse, but there is not a difference. They are interchangeable.
Confrontational Interventions Don’t Work
The media often presents interventions as a crowd of people waiting to ambush someone they care about. They’re supposed to work by pressuring the addict to admit they have a problem. In fact, they generally cause the opposite to happen.
They can actually make the addict more resistant to getting the help they need. They end up feeling attacked or misunderstood and like no one supports them. They might have trouble trusting after that.
Medications Are Not Addiction Substitutes
Many drugs are used to replace the dangerous and illegal ones. They are meant to have fewer side effects and be given in controlled doses. This is so that they can eventually wean off of it instead of having just to quit cold turkey.
Stigma is strong around these methods because people feel as if they are just replacing one addiction with another. This is not the case. These can help with substance abuse and lessen chances of relapse.