Frequently Asked Questions
What is the difference in Opioid Dependence and Opioid Addiction?
Addiction—or compulsive drug use despite harmful consequences—is characterized by an inability to stop using a drug; failure to meet work, social, or family obligations. Opioid dependence is characterized by tolerance (needing more of the drug to experience the same effects) and withdrawal (physical symptoms when trying to quit using prescription drugs).
Is Opiate Addiction a Disease?
Opiate addiction is a Chronic disease of the brain that results from a deficiency of the chemical Dopamine. Dopamine allows an individual to feel “normal” and experience day to day contentment and happiness.
What is Suboxone?
Suboxone is an opiate that is unlike any other. It supplies just enough dopamine so that a person does not experience a high but rather begins to feel “normal.” Withdrawals and cravings stop immediately which allows the individual to resume their regular day to day activities. They can return to work and begin to interact with their friends and families normally again. In other words, they begin to get their life back. There is never any tolerance with Suboxone or a need to take more than 2-3 Suboxone pills per day.
What is Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT)?
MAT is substance abuse treatment that integrates the use of medications such as Suboxone to treat opioid addiction. According to the American Society of Addiction Medicine combining Suboxone, Behavioral Therapy and a 12-step program provides a person with the greatest chance of recovery. This results in the complete treatment of mind, body, and soul leading to restoration.
If I Begin Treatment with Suboxone For Opiate Addiction am I Just Trading One Drug for Another?
No…Medicated-Assisted Treatment programs provide a safe and controlled level of Suboxone to overcome the use of an abused opioid by relieving withdrawal symptoms and psychological changes. The key is to think of the use of Suboxone more as necessary medical treatment, similar to the way people take statins to lower cholesterol or insulin to keep their blood sugar in check. People with addiction may be dependent on the drugs to keep them clean, but they are not addicted to them, since addiction involves severe disruption of daily activities as the craving for the next high takes precedence over all else.
What Can Cause an Opiate Addiction?
Dopamine deficiency in the addicted person results from a
combination of genetic predisposition and event or traumas
they previously experienced in life. The traumas can be physical,
emotional, or sexual. The potential addict has fears, anxieties
and low self-esteem that most people around them may not even
know about. They can put on a great false face in order to try to fit
into their existing environment.
If this person ever takes and opiate all these abnormal feelings go away.
They feel normal, good or even great for the first time in their life.
They think they have finally found the answer to their misery.
How do you become addicted to prescription drugs?
Dependence on prescription drugs is characterized by tolerance (needing more of the drug to experience the same effects) and withdrawal (physical symptoms when trying to quit using prescription drugs).
People who are addicted to prescription drugs also become psychologically dependent, experiencing drug cravings and compulsive drug-seeking behavior. They continue to abuse prescription medications despite negative effects on their health, career, relationships and finances.
Why should I use a combination of Suboxone, therapy and the 12-step program in my treatment plan?
Once Suboxone stops withdrawals and cravings, long term brain dopamine recovery can begin. Emotional and mental recovery results from therapy and the 12-step program. The dopamine recovery of the brain takes at least 2 years and will never be completely normal.
What are some common Suboxone side effects?
Mild constipation, dry mouth, headache
What if I have a mental health issue (like depression), too?
First, if you’re struggling with addiction and a mental disorder, you’re definitely not alone; many people are in the same situation. If you decide to seek treatment, it’s essential that whatever program you choose addresses both issues at the same time. Treatment that factors in both addiction and mental health will give you the best possible chance for a successful, lasting recovery.
What is Narcotics Anonymous (NA)?
NA is a nonprofit fellowship or society of men and women for whom drugs had become a major problem. Membership is open to all persons addicted to drugs, regardless of the particular drug or combination of drugs used. Narcotics Anonymous (NA) provides a recovery process and support network that are linked together. One of the keys to NA's success is the therapeutic value of addicts working with other addicts. Members share their successes and challenges in overcoming active addiction and living drug-free productive lives through the application of the principles contained within the Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of NA.
Is the Program Confidential?
In addition to standard HIPAA laws, federal regulations mandate strict confidentiality for information about patients being treated for substance use disorders. The law requires written patient consent before information about substance abuse treatment can be disclosed to any other source.
What are the general guidelines of A New Start, LLC?
History and physical exam
Substance abuse History
Urine drug screen
Induction of medicine (if never taken)
Initial lab work
Intake assessment with Therapist in first month
Group therapy attendance monthly beginning first month
NA/AA Meeting at least twice monthly beginning first month
Weekly physician visits for first two months of care
Physician visit every two weeks
Urine drug screen every visit
Monthly group therapy attendance
Monthly individual therapy attendance
2NA/AA Meetings per month with attendance confirmed by leader
Have been in program 18 months or longer
All urine drug screens consistent for past 6 months
Attended group therapy monthly for past 6 months
Attended NA/AA meetings 2 X monthly last 6 months
Attended individual therapy monthly
Will be scheduled monthly to see physician
If failure of any of the above items, must return to stabilization phase with visits every two weeks for 2 months minimum
May return to monthly visits if all items appropriate after the 2 months to re-stabilization phase