State Lawmakers Say Limiting Prescription Supply Could Improve Opioid Epidemic and Access to Drug Rehab Centers in Louisiana
A recent drug take-back event in Metairie collected hundreds of thousands of prescription drugs sitting unused in the medicine cabinets of local residents. The event, which was hosted by the DEA, is held several times per year to prevent teens, friends, and family members from abusing prescription painkillers and developing addictions. Louisiana lawmakers now say that limiting prescription supplies could improve the state’s opioid epidemic, and increase access to drug rehab centers in Louisiana for individuals suffering from substance abuse and addiction.
If you or someone you care about is addicted to prescription painkillers, understand there are several local rehab centers that can help. Call our confidential helpline at 504-521-7699 to speak with a caring addiction counselor who can provide you with the resources you or your loved one need to successfully achieve sobriety.
Limiting Prescription Supply in Louisiana
Louisiana State Representative Helena Moreno says doctors in Louisiana issue more opioid prescriptions than in any other state — enough to put pills in the hands of every resident. Moreno adds that about 80% of heroin addicts begin their addictions by abusing unused prescription opioids obtained from friends and family.
Moreno says that next year, state lawmakers have plans to reduce the number of opioids prescribed to patients at any given time. For instance, instead of receiving a 30-day supply of potent opioids such as fentanyl, patients might receive a three, seven, or 14-day supply. This may help prevent unused opioids from sitting around homes and being accessible to those vulnerable to addiction.
The DEA’s drug take-back events allow residents to dispose of unused medications safely without having to worry about contaminating water supply or allowing drugs to fall into the hands of addicts. Special Agent Debbie Webber says it’s common for addicts to dig through garbage to look for pills, and that flushing unused medication contaminates groundwater and poses a health threat. But bringing in unused pills lowers the risk for prescription drug abuse, and could lower the state’s high opioid overdose rates.
Overcoming Opioid Addiction at Drug Rehab Centers
Breaking free of opioid addiction often takes more than just willpower, since opioids alter brain chemistry in a way that makes people more susceptible to addiction. Individuals who struggle with opioid addiction face difficulties quitting on their own on behalf of strong drug cravings and withdrawal symptoms. This causes addicts to relapse and continue using heroin and other opioids to avoid experiencing pain, discomfort, and withdrawal.
Fortunately, the physical side effects of opioid withdrawal can be treated using medications that mirror the effects of opioids without producing the same feelings of pain relief and euphoria. These medications are available at most rehab centers that specialize in treating opioid addiction, and are often combined with counseling and therapy for the best treatment outcome. This treatment approach, known as medication-assisted treatment, is proven effective at helping opioid addicts stay clean and achieve the life goals they had in place before facing addiction.
Are you addicted to opioid painkillers and live in the state of Louisiana? Consider taking your unused drugs to the nearest drug take-back location and seek help as soon as possible. Call our confidential helpline at 504-521-7699 to learn more about drug rehab centers in Louisiana that will help you achieve improved health, happiness, and sobriety.
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