Yes, we are saying it. Yes, we are poking the giant. Yes, we are doing it intentionally.
To establish our claim, let’s frame this blog with some hard data:
- About 130 Americans die every day from an opioid overdose
- In 2017, doctors in the US issued 191,218,272 opioid prescriptions
- 30% of people who take prescription opioids misuse them
- Approximately 2.1 million Americans have an opioid use disorder
- About 5% of people with an opioid use disorder will try Heroin
- Every year, worldwide, alcohol is the cause of 5.3% of all deaths (or 1 in every 20)
- About 300 million people throughout the world have an alcohol use disorder
- On average, 30 Americans die every day in an alcohol-related car accident
- 6 Americans die every day from alcohol poisoning
- Men between the ages of 18 and 25 are the most likely to binge drink and become alcoholics
Substance abuse in America is a big problem. It has also become big business. According to Marketdata, drug and alcohol addiction rehab in the United States was a $42 billion business in 2020 and growing quickly. There are now 15,000+ private treatment facilities with no end of growth forecast.
ONE of TEN people you know has an opioid abuse problem.
An estimated 53 million Americans aged 12+ were illicit drug abusers in 2018. Re-read that statistic and notice the age group. Addiction is a true epidemic in our country, and in the world.
At this point of the article, you must be shaking your head and wondering what, if anything, can be done?
In addiction recovery, the success standard is set at achieving 12 months of sobriety for the addict.
Inpatient Rehabilitation centers, or rehabs, have a very poor record against this standard. On average, a patient with drug or alcohol addiction would need to complete FIVE rounds of complete inpatient treatment BEFORE achieving 12 months of sobriety.
At an average of 45 days and $50k per program, that is $250,000 of someone’s money,
either yours or your insurance provider’s, to achieve sobriety.
Bear in mind that every relapse, every time someone needs to start over, is a potentially life-threatening event. It is a bold statement to say that an industry worth so much, that has treated millions of addicts, doesn’t work. But it is still a true statement.
Only 7-12% of Inpatient Rehab addicts reach 12 months of sobriety.
The concept sounds good. Take the addict out of their life and pop them into some mountain retreat with beautiful views, grand staircases, three square meals a day and constant love and care and therapy for 45 days and, voila! your loved one is fixed!
This is the great marketing achievement of rehabs. We hear a great deal about their lavish, peaceful, healing services. We hear almost nothing about their success rate.
To be fair, there are addicts who DO recover through inpatient rehab programs and we applaud those patients and facilities.
Addiction is NOT a moral problem.
Addiction is a medical issue.
The problem with the rehab road is simply that it is designed badly. The majority of recovery programs across the US focus on a rapid detoxification treatment and an extended moral behavioral therapy plan.
An addict’s brain loses the ability to make rational and reasonable decisions where their addiction is concerned. The long-term abuse of drugs or alcohol rewires the addict’s brain to focus on one singular purpose – getting the next dose of dopamine.
Why a person became an addict is most likely a moral issue, but once the brain is addicted to a substance or substances, the addiction takes over the executive function of the person. That part of the brain that we use daily for rational thought and reasoning is no longer operating correctly in the addict.
The addict actually becomes another person. This different person simply obeys their brain’s demand for the next hit.
Trying to help an addict by moral reasoning alone is like trying to convince a person dying of dehydration NOT to drink that glass of water in front of them.
Before ANY true recovery can take place, the brain must be healed first.
White Tree Medical is NOT an inpatient recovery facility. We are an Outpatient Detox medical center. The difference is that we focus on a sustained, longer-term program to detoxify you from your drug or alcohol addictions. We focus on medically healing your brain, first, while you stay in your family and in your life.
As a final statistic, we have achieved a 12-month sobriety success rate with our patients 84 percent of the time from the FIRST treatment program.
Rehabs are not working. White Tree Medical isn’t rehab. Call us today. 801 503 9211.