The reality is addiction to legal substances is just as much an issue in this country as addiction to illegal substances. In fact, addiction to legal painkillers is a far more serious problem in terms of overdose deaths. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, in 2014 about 5,000 people in the US died from cocaine overdoses, 10,000 died from heroin overdoses, and 18,000 died from prescription opioid pain relievers.
Oxycodone (sometimes known by the brand name OxyContin) and Hydrocodone (Lortab) are two of the most popular prescription opioid painkillers. While these medications are enormously effective at treating pain, they’re also highly habit-forming. Anyone who has struggled with addiction to oxycodone or hydrocodone, or who has a friend or family member who has struggled with addiction to oxycodone or hydrocodone, knows that quitting these drugs isn’t easy.
At Inspire Malibu, we’ve helped many people overcome addiction to prescription painkillers with our evidence-based treatment and exceptionally high staff-to-client ratio (we never house more than 11 clients at a time).
Oxycodone and hydrocodone, as well as any other opiate, work by binding to proteins called opiate receptors that are located in the spinal cord, brainstem, and limbic system (a network of nerves in the areas of the brain responsible for basic emotions such as fear and pleasure). There are 3 types of opiate receptors, all named after letters in the Greek alphabet: mu, delta, and kappa.
The effects opiates produce when they bind to those receptors is what makes these drugs such an effective treatment for pain management.
Mu receptors in particular are responsible for the intense euphoria users often feel when they take opiates, and they’re also what make opiates so addictive.
Another problem with mu receptors is that they produce the side effect of respiratory depression. Opiates make it more difficult to breath, and in high enough doses can shut down breathing completely – this is the exact cause of most prescription opioid deaths.
Additional side effects of opioid use include nausea, constipation, itchiness, drowsiness, and a warming sensation throughout the body.
Quitting oxycodone or hydrocodone is difficult enough on its own, and it’s made even more difficult by the effects of withdrawal, which range from mildly unpleasant to truly dreadful.
Common opioid withdrawal symptoms include:
Inspire Malibu provides a comfortable environment for detoxification, supervised by trained addiction experts.
We use Suboxone and Subutex to curb cravings and make the transition from heavy opioid use to sobriety as painless as possible. Suboxone has been shown to be highly effective in this regard, and it’s much more convenient than going to a Methadone clinic every day.
We use a science and evidence-based approach to treatment that includes one on one counseling, group therapy sessions, yoga and other therapies such as the following:
Our founder and medical director, Dr. A.R. Mohammad, was awarded the prestigious Patient’s Choice Physician Award in 2011 (he was chosen from a pool of over 700,000 other physicians for qualified for the award).