Time to Intervene? 3 Signs That Your Loved One May Have an Opioid Addiction

If you suspect that your loved one has developed an addiction to opioids, it's time to take a closer look at their behavior. There may be subtle or even not-so-subtle changes that provide you with the evidence you need. A recent study shows that the risk of dying from an opioid addiction is now greater than the risk of dying in a car accident. Not only that, but the risk of dying from an accidental opioid overdose also surpasses the risks of death associated with things like falls, drowning, and fires. If your loved one is addicted to opioids, you need to get them help as soon as possible. Here are three signs that will help you determine if your loved one has an addiction to opioids.

Not Taking Medication as Prescribed

If your loved one has a prescription for opioid-based pain medication but they've stopped taking it as prescribed, they may be suffering from an addiction. This is particularly true if they're doubling up on their doses, or taking their medication before the allotted time. It's also important to note if your loved one is taking their pain medication when they're not in pain. For instance, they may say that they're taking their medication to prevent the onset of pain. These are all signs of a possible addiction.

Increased Hostility and Mood Swings

If you've noticed a recent change in your loved one's demeanor, such as increased hostility or mood swings, they could be addicted to their pain medication. Abusing opioid-based pain medication can cause emotional and psychological changes, especially when the abuse of medication has led to an addiction. If your loved one is showing signs of emotional or psychological changes, they may be addicted to their pain medication.

Paying Cash for Medications

If your loved one has started paying cash for their pain medication, even though you have insurance coverage, they may be covering up an addiction. This is particularly true if the medication is being prescribed by different doctors. Look at your loved one's prescription bottles. If they're all for the same medication but from different prescribing doctors, it's time to intervene. Paying cash for pain medication that's covered by insurance and going to multiple doctors are both ways that people can cover up opioid addictions.

Don't take chances with your loved one's well-being. If you suspect that they're suffering from an opioid addiction, and you recognize any of the warning signs described above, you need to seek help for them as soon as possible. Encourage them to call a medical center that offers opioid addiction treatment so that they can get help.