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It's no secret that the opioid epidemic is continuing to accelerate in the United States. In fact, Forbes reported on November 29 that U.S. life expectancy has declined over the last three years, and the article listed widespread drug use as a possible cause. Life expectancy has not declined in the United States for this many consecutive years since World War I, marring a century's worth of progress.
Urgent action and deeper understandings are essential to stopping harmful drug use nation-wide. Though treatment at methadone clinics and rehab are important, recognizing risk factors can also prevent addiction before it begins. Here are a few factors that might make an individual more vulnerable to addiction:
Having Health Issues Treated With Prescription Opioid Painkillers
One of the top risk factors for developing this type of addiction is taking other pain medications prescribed by a doctor. In fact, four out of five new heroin users started out misusing prescription painkillers. Though these medications are necessary for patients with painful conditions, even a few days of consistent use can lead to dependency.
Living in Rural Areas
General substance abuse, and especially opioid abuse, tends to be more prevalent in remote regions with low population densities. These areas have higher rates of poverty, lower education levels, and less access to treatment facilities, all of which increase the risk of opioid abuse.
Having a Mental Health Condition
Individuals with disorders like anxiety or depression are more likely to become addicted to substances that promote good feelings. Though drugs are destructive, individuals struggling with mental health might turn to substances for relief, leading to comorbidity of addiction disorders and mental health conditions.
Possessing Addiction-Susceptible Genes
Research has proven over and over that genetics influence a person's propensity for substance addiction. If an individual's parents or grandparents had any type of addiction, psychological and biological factors make that person more likely to become substance-dependent.
If you're struggling with heroin or other opioid use, methadone treatment may be the best way to overcome addiction without severe withdrawals. Looking for a methadone clinic near metropolitan Chicago? Contact Sundance Methadone Treatment Center, or simply Google "methadone clinic near me" to find quick, compassionate treatment.