When people think of healthcare, they might not think of addiction treatment. Our understanding of addiction as a medical issue, not a moral or criminal one, is still developing. If you believe in healthcare, you must also believe in addiction treatment.
For someone to receive successful addiction treatment, they must be treated with proper medical attention. The effects of long-term addiction can be intense to the point that undoing them must be done with as skilled of a hand as possible. These are some of the reasons why addiction treatment is a vital part of healthcare.
It’s a Disease
It cannot be stressed enough: addiction is a disease. No one makes the choice to have a dependency on a substance any more than they make the choice to catch a cold. Turning it into a moral failing just reflects poorly on you and shows how little you actually understand about this topic.
Addiction can plague both the body and the mind. Patients in treatment facilities need to be given professional detoxification in order to adjust to a life away from addictive substances. In many cases, going cold turkey is not just difficult, it can be a shock to the system. That’s why things like methadone, for opioid dependency, are used for addiction treatment.
What choices led to someone’s condition are irrelevant. If someone is hurt in a fight they started, a doctor is still obligated to provide care. Addiction can befall people far more easily than you might realize, and it’s not a disease to be ignored.
Addiction Does Not Discriminate
The number of people struggling with addiction in the U.S. alone is in the millions. That’s an epidemic that doesn’t shock people as much as it probably should. It could be because, unlike other ailments, addiction isn’t contagious. You probably walk by at least a handful of addicts a day without having any idea of what they’re struggling with.
If you disapprove of drug abuse and addiction, then you should definitely approve of helping people find means to get clean. Comprehensive addiction treatment acts as a means of addressing the complicated nature of addiction. You can’t tell someone to just quit hard drugs or alcohol any more easily than you can tell someone with a broken leg to just walk.
Even if the number of people dealing with addiction makes up a minority, it’s still a substantial minority. It’s also something that people can fall into so easily. You’ve likely heard about all the people who became addicted to heroin as a result of being prescribed opiates by their doctors. Addiction comes when you least expect it, and it doesn’t go away unless you’re willing to put up a fight.
It’s For Healthcare Professionals To Address
If medical professionals aren’t willing to help those with addiction struggles, it’s doubtful anyone else will be able to. Addiction treatment deals with the complexities of the body both mental and physical. Someone with a layman’s understanding of addiction is not equipped to handle this, and the medical world’s understanding continues to grow as more research is done.
Doctors, nurses, and other medical professionals must do their best to not show any sort of favoritism or moral judgment. Biases are inevitable, but they must be realized before they lead to a patient being given negligent care or none whatsoever. A doctor who is only willing to treat those he sees as being on equal moral ground as he is not a doctor that should be trusted.
Addiction treatment is a branch of healthcare, not an offshoot. Healthcare professionals need to view it as part of their field just as must as things like surgery and childbirth are. To take away the stigma of addiction treatment, we need to talk about it in as non-judgemental of a way as possible. Medical expertise isn’t just about knowing how the body works. It’s also about listening to the patient and understanding from where exactly they and their ailments are coming from.