What to Know About the Opioid Epidemic

The opioid epidemic is one that has spread throughout the entire country, and California is no exception. When people think about the epidemic, they often think that it is a problem that focuses many on street drugs, or synthetic opioids. The term opioids, however, is an umbrella term for a large number of medications and drugs, including oxycodone, morphine, and codeine. Many of these are prescription medications that cause problems when patients begin taking them as a form of treatment and later become addicted to them.

Anyone that suffers from an opioid addiction, or that has family members that suffer from one, should know some important facts about these addictions, including how to spot them. It is also important that loved ones, as well as anyone suffering from an addiction knows they may be able to claim damages for any losses they sustain as a result of the addiction. A personal injury lawyer could help them do it.

Signs of an Opioid Addiction

There is no understating how scary addiction is. Most people have heard of the dangers of opioid addictions and do not want their loved ones to succumb to such a disease. Unfortunately, many people also become addicted to opioids but do not realize it until it is too late. For these individuals, it is very important to know the signs of an addiction, so treatment can begin as soon as possible. These signs include:

  • Using a drug for longer than it is prescribed, or using more at one time than what was prescribed
  • Unsuccessful attempts to quit using the drug
  • Craving the drug
  • Interferences occurring at work, school, or home, as a result of opioid use
  • Placing oneself in dangerous situations to obtain or use opioids
  • Taking more of the drug to experience the same results
  • Becoming ill shortly after stopping the use of opioids
  • Exhibiting signs of opioid intoxication, including falling asleep or narrowed pupils

Treating an Opioid Addiction

When a person understands that they have an opioid addiction and they want treatment, there are two main therapies used. These include methadone and buprenorphine. When taken in correct doses, these two drugs do not cause addiction. They can help a person stop taking the opioids and eliminate any withdrawal symptoms they may experience.

Counseling can also be given one-on-one, with a patient and a counselor, or it can take place in a group setting, such as meetings offered by Narcotics Anonymous. Many treatment programs combine the use of medications and counseling.

A Personal Injury Lawyer Could Help Victims Claim Compensation

The dangers of opioid addiction are largely known, yet doctors still continue to prescribe them irresponsibly. Whatever the case, victims have the legal ability to argue that the person they obtained the drugs from acted negligently when prescribing them. If victims of addiction are able to successfully prove this, they could claim damages for the cost of treatment, or the losses they have suffered as a result of losing a loved one to an opioid addiction.

If you have suffered damages as a result of an opioid addiction, or you have lost a loved one to it, call our personal injury lawyers today. We know how to argue these cases to give you the best chance of claiming the compensation you need.