Opioid addiction: A real problem in Ontario
An estimated 30,000 people in Ontario have an opioid addiction. Dealing with this issue requires resources, patience and care.
Many of us, including pharmacists, nurses and doctors, are not comfortable talking about opioid addiction and treatment.
While the roots of the problem are complex, the facts speak for themselves. This isn’t just about heroin. The majority of people currently seeking treatment for opioid addiction are using prescription medications, obtained either legally or illegally. Many who experience opioid addiction are reluctant to seek help; those who do often fail to get the treatment and support they need.
Commonly misused prescription drugs
- oxycodone (e.g., Percocet)
- codeine (e.g., Tylenol #3, Tylenol #1)
- hydromorphone (e.g., Dilaudid)
- meperidine (e.g., Demerol)
"Opioid dependence is a growing problem in our communities and our practices. As health professionals, we need to respond”
Peter Selby, MBBS, CCFP, CAMH