Can Prevention of Drug Abuse Only Come About by Making Drugs Harder to Abuse?

In an effort to curb the abuse of addictive opiate painkillers, a number of these drugs have gone through a reformulation in the last couple of years. These reformations were aimed at keeping people from being able to crush or dissolve the pills so they could be snorted or injected. This is a common way of abusing drugs like hydrocodone, oxycodone or hydromorphone. By brand name, common drugs of these types include Vicodin or Lortab, OxyContin and Opana. 

The most common technique to prevent abuse is impregnating the drug in a plastic substance. When the pill is swallowed, the body will gradually absorb the painkiller from the plastic and pass the remainder out of the body. The person who tries to crush the pill will find that the pill will deform without releasing any of the intoxicating ingredients. The pill can be abused but it requires extensive work. 

Because there has been no effective way to educate people out of trying this drug for the first time or convincing people to stop abusing it once they start, the solution developed by US agencies and pharmaceutical companies has been to change the formulation. 

One drug after another has gone through this process and others may follow. At first it was OxyContin that was plasticized in 2010. Then OxyContin in Canada was released in a new plasticized formulation – OxyNeo. 

A new sticky formulation of hydrocodone has been announced by two pharmaceutical companies but has not yet been released. 

Next in line was Opana or hydromorphone. This extremely strong painkiller quickly became the drug of choice for those who were accustomed to abuse the earlier formulation of Oxycontin. In December 2011, Endo Pharmaceuticals announced that it would be reformulating this pill. In June 2012, the old formulation was discontinued but in the intervening months, thefts and abuse of Opana rocketed up. 

But all these reformulations began to create a new and life-threatening problem. In one small town after another, those who had been abusing prescription pain medications began to acquire and abuse heroin. But users may not have known how to manage the varying potency of this drug. One small town newspaper after another began to run stories about small town boys and girls who overdosed on heroin and died. 

Reformulation is Poor as a Sole Solution 

When a person is addicted to a pill that gets reformulated, he has two choices. He can seek recovery and begin a new sober life or he can switch to another drug he can lay his hands on. 

When the family or the addict himself (or herself) finds the Narconon Arrowhead drug rehab program, then there is a very good chance of lasting recovery. After the long-term residential program at Narconon Arrowhead, seven out of ten graduates go home to create lasting sober lives for themselves. 

There is no set time limit for this drug rehab program at Narconon Arrowhead. Rather, each person progresses through its eight phases at their own rate. This is essential, because each person must repair the damage done by addiction and learn sober living skills in order to stay clean. This is a major change that each person is going to process at a different rate. So while the average length of time to complete the program is three to five months, if a person takes seven or eight months or longer, the price of the program does not change. That is the Narconon Arrowhead commitment to each person’s recovery. 

To lose the compulsive urge to abuse prescription painkillers or other opiate drugs, a person must overcome the cravings that drive him back to those drugs over and over. Most people on this program state that the Narconon New Life Detoxification Program – one phase of the overall recovery program – helps them lose the cravings. This step employs a sauna, moderate exercise and nutritional supplements to activate the body’s ability to flush out old drug residues. These residues have been shown to be involved in the triggering of cravings. But when the residues are gone, some people even say that the cravings are now gone. 

Then each person can focus on building new sober living skills, without the nagging discomfort of cravings. This unique step is a big reason that the Narconon Arrowhead program is so successful when others have failed. 

Another reason is the thorough life skills training each person goes through. It’s essential that a person in recovery is able to learn who makes a safe associate who will support sobriety and who will be dangerous to associate with. Most addicts can look at their past drug use and locate someone who made it difficult to stay sober. When a person can recognize a dangerous associate and know how to handle them when found, then sobriety is more assured. This is just one example of the life skills training. 

Find out about all the steps of the Narconon Arrowhead program and how they work to produce a sober person with an enjoyable life. Call 1-800-468-6933 today.