Opioid Abuse in Someone You Love: Recognizing the Signs
| 3 min read
Dr. William Beecroft, MD, DLFAPA, is medical director of behavioral health at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. Dr. Beecroft is board-certified in general psychiatry, consultation-liaison and geriatrics specialties. He serves on the Michigan Suicide Prevention Commission.
- Use your words wisely. Avoid negative speak or words like “junkie” or “idiot.” Feeling a lack of support can push them away and make them more resistant to getting the care they need. Instead, keep the discussion focused on their behavior, not them as an individual.
- Talk things through with a professional. Getting guidance from a licensed physician can play a big role in helping the patient seek treatment. While HIPAA laws indicate that physicians and therapists cannot speak to patients’ loved ones about their care, encourage your friend or relative to see their primary care doctor or a psychiatrist, therapist or addictionologist. Hearing information and observations from a professional as opposed to a family member can make a big impact on someone.
- Consider what kind of treatment is the right route. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Blue Care Network’s Behavioral Health services can help identify the best treatment facility for the patient’s needs, depending on what stage of use disorder they are in. You can contact this team on your loved one’s behalf by dialing the phone number on the back of their ID card. While they can’t give you specific member information, you can get an understanding of the options available to them.