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Addiction in America: Changing Perceptions on Treatment

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Watching the news or catching up on Netflix’s most popular series, you’ll notice a trend in what Americans are watching on television: Addiction, both glamorized and raw, is more prevalent than ever in the media.

And, when the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says there are an estimated 91 overdose deaths a day, it makes sense that addiction is an epidemic dominating the news cycle.

Yet, the CDC says the research could still be underestimating the actual number of opioid-related deaths year over year. Opioid-related overdoses have nearly quadrupled from 2012 to 2017, and experts say the epidemic only continues to grow.

A 2015 report from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health that found more than 27 million Americans are using illicit substances and misusing prescription drugs, while nearly 66 million report binge drinking in the past month, making addiction 1.5 times more prevalent than cancer.

That’s why a 2016 report from the former Surgeon General called for Americans to understand addiction is a chronic neurological disease, not a moral failing.

“We are at a pivotal moment in the history of America with an extraordinary opportunity to shift the paradigm in our approach to addiction prevention, treatment, and recovery,” says Douglas Tieman, president and CEO of Caron Treatment Centers.

The Surgeon General Report on Alcohol, Drugs, and Health urges public health officials and policymakers to continue to emphasize programs that provide effective prevention and treatment services while also working to reduce the stigma surrounding the disease of addiction. The report suggests that treatment models that combine medication, behavioral therapies, and social support are the most effective ways to manage addiction and work toward long-term recovery for those affected.

Comprehensive, evidence-based programs like those offered at Caron Treatment Centers play a critical role in addressing addiction.

The dedicated team at Caron Treatment Centers creates an integrated behavioral approach based on proven programs personalized to meet you and your loved one’s needs in order to move your whole family toward lifelong recovery together.

At Caron, doctors and behavioral health therapists work together to empower patients and families, as well as the public to understand that all three modalities of health—mind, body, and spirit—should be integrated in order to create an optimal treatment and recovery plan for those suffering from an addiction. Every facet of your life and your family’s life is key in addressing long-term solutions that free you from the burden of addiction.

As the Surgeon General’s report shows, one in seven Americans will struggle with some form of alcohol or drug addiction. But with evidence-based, multi-pronged approaches like those offered at Caron Treatment Centers, there is a chance millions of Americans will be able to manage their treatment in a way that leads to longer lives on a path toward recovery.

“I believe we’re ready. We must come together as a society to each do our part to help make these solutions a reality,” says Tieman.

If you suspect a loved one is struggling with drug use or addiction, don’t wait until it’s too late. For more information on taking the next steps toward recovery, visit Caron Treatment Centers.