Addiction & Dependency
Working with your primary care provider or treatment team, being well-informed on the risks and benefits of different options for pain and having a well-developed plan with realistic goals for recovery are key in developing a treatment plan for pain. Opioids are strong medications that can be effective when taken as prescribed. However, they are known to cause euphoria and what some describe as intense pleasure. Because of such powerful effects, opioids can be addictive.
Some signs to look out for include:
- Taking medications in ways other than prescribed. This can include taking the next dose sooner than it is due, doubling up on doses, crushing, chewing or snorting the medication.
- Running out of medication sooner than scheduled
- Feeling as though a higher dose is needed to achieve the same effect
- Spending increasing amounts of time thinking about how to get opioids
If you are concerned that you or a loved one may be experiencing symptoms of opioid dependency, or “addiction”, it is important to speak with your primary care provider about it. Community Addiction and Mental Health services can help with dependency, and with other mental health concerns that are often part of the pain management and recovery journey. You can also find more information on opioid dependency through the Canadian Mental Health Association .
The following resources are a good place to start to learn more about opioid dependency and available treatment options.
|Methadone for Opioid Use Disorder: Your Questions Answered: ISMP, CADTH & others||A patient handout with questions and answers about using methadone to treat opioid use disorder.|
|Buprenorphine/Naloxone (Suboxone) for Opioid Use Disorder: Your Questions Answered: ISMP CADTH & others||A patient handout with questions and answers about using Suboxone to treat opioid use disorder.|