Prescription painkillers are a type of medication that is legally prescribed by a licensed physician to individuals who are in need of pain relief. These medications work by blocking the messages of pain to the brain, alleviating chronic pain or helping those who have undergone surgery. When used as directed, prescribed pain meds can improve the quality of life for many individuals. Unfortunately due to the associated pleasurable effects, pain pills are often abused. Since a doctor prescribes these pills, many individuals are under the false belief that they are not dangerous, however this couldn’t be further from the truth. When abused, pain medication is very dangerous and prolonged use can lead to an addiction.
Red River Hospital is a 74-bed psychiatric and addiction treatment center located in Wichita Falls, Texas. For over four decades, we have remained steadfast in our diligence to help improve the lives of those who entrust us with their care. Through individualized treatment plans, the highly trained and qualified staff at Red River Hospital assist those who are in need of services for behavioral health concerns, substance abuse issues, and co-occurring disorders. By separating our hospital into four distinct units, we are able to successfully meet the needs of all age groups, including children, adolescents, adults, and senior adults. We are also proud to offer a specialized military heroes unit for our United States Service Members. At Red River, we recognize how destructive an addiction to painkillers can be and we want to show you that there is a life without drugs. That you can get sober and get your life back.
Helping a Loved One or Family Member Get Treatment
It is common for many individuals to associate drug abuse or addiction with illegal drugs, however there are a growing number of people who have become addicted to prescription medications such as pain pills. Since many individuals who are addicted to pain pills started out using them for legitimate purposes, it can be difficult to identify when someone has a problem. Here are some signs that may indicate your loved one may be addicted to painkillers:
- They have been taking more and more medication to prevent their pain
- They will make excuses for taking their medication or say things such as “I only take them at night”
- They are more irritable than usual
- They have prescriptions from various pharmacy’s
- They may begin borrow or stealing money
- Neglecting responsibilities
- They are withdrawing from family and loved ones
If you recognize these symptoms in your loved one then it may be an indication that they need professional help. While at first they may react negatively to your suggestion that they seek treatment for a pain pill addiction remember it is important that you keep trying and not give up on them. Here are some suggestions that may help you when speaking to them about getting help:
- Don’t be judgmental
- Refrain from lecturing or arguing with your loved one
- Offer help, support, and reassurance
- Have some solutions ready
- Ask for support from other people in your loved one’s life
- Truly listen and try to be sympathetic
- Be patient, recovery takes time
Why Consider Treatment at Red River
Individuals who abuse painkillers are at an increased risk for the development of an addiction as the continued abuse leads to changes in the structure and function of the brain. This causes the body to want more and more of these substances and eventually an individual is unable to function on a daily basis without using these medications. As addiction takes over an individual’s life, he or she may begin to be unable to hold a job, his or her personal relationships may deteriorate, and he or she may begin to engage in risky behaviors in order to obtain more pills. In severe cases, an individual may overdose, which can reduce respiration and lead to death. If not properly treated, the consequences of pain pill abuse will only get worse.
Inpatient treatment programs are an extremely valuable way to successfully treat addictions. By entering into an inpatient program, individuals will first be able to medically detox from all substances, allowing their bodies to become free of the drug in a safe and secure setting. Additionally, inpatient programs can help individuals to get to the underlying cause of your addiction and address any mental health issues you may have. Through a number of different therapeutic techniques, individuals can learn pain management and other coping skills to help them remain free. By temporarily stepping away from their everyday home lives, these individuals are also being secluded from the triggers that lead to their use. In this setting, people are able to safely and effectively work towards a full recovery.
Program Philosophy and Benefits
When you or a loved one is in crisis, or when life feels as though it is spiraling out of control, the staff at Red River Hospital is here to help. We strive to understand the point of view of others and actively express encouragement as individuals work towards achieving their goals. At Red River, we take responsibility for treating each and every person who comes through our doors with the respect and dignity that he or she deserves. By providing structured programming and implementing individualized treatment plans for each patient, we aim to show everyone how they can succeed. We surround patients with every facet of information that they need to get better, and we will do everything in our power to make sure that those who comes to us for care leave our center with the confidence they need to continue on their path to a brighter future.
Types of Treatment Offered at Red River
Red River Hospital provides assessments 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, which is provided free of charge. These assessments are conducted by a licensed professional and then reviewed by another licensed team member or a supervisor. If it is determined that we will be able to fully meet the patient’s needs, one of our physicians will be contacted and the admissions process will begin. Our dedicated psychiatric staff and multidisciplinary treatment team provide medical management and various therapies designed to encompass all of the needs of all of our patients. We utilize a variety of therapeutic techniques as part of our inpatient program, including the following:
Detoxification: When patients come to Red River and are struggling with chemical dependency concerns, we provide a 5-7 day stay in our detox unit. Here, every individual receives 24 hour monitoring by a team of nurses as his or her body becomes cleansed of any toxic substances that are present. For those who are struggling with an addiction to methamphetamines, detox marks the beginning of the therapeutic process. To learn more about this process, please see our detoxification program page.
Medication management: Medications may be used as part of the treatment process for a pain pill addiction. This is especially true when the person is suffering from a co-occurring mental illness. All patients are seen daily by a psychiatrist in order to ensure that the medications that have been prescribed are working properly and to make any changes that may be necessary.
Group therapy: Red River’s inpatient programs are group-focused, with a variety of groups being held daily. Some of the topics that are covered in these groups include effective communication skills, appropriate assertive behavior skills, anger management, conflict resolution, relapse prevention, and medication management. On our progressive care unit, additional groups and activities are held in order to assist in reality orientation.
Family therapy: At Red River, we see each disorder as family disorder because these illnesses not only impact the life of the individual who has the disorder, but the lives of each patient’s family members as well. We believe that if the family is not involved, then the changes that are made during the treatment process will not be carried over into the home environment. As a result, we encourage family sessions to occur on a regular basis in all units and can be done via telephone if necessary. On our child and adolescent unit, at least one family session is required prior to the patient’s discharge.
Individual therapy: Individual sessions occur on an as-needed basis for all units except our military unit where patients have a minimum of one individual therapy session each week.
Recreational therapy occurs at least once per day and includes activities such as physical therapy and yoga.
Daily school is provided for all of our child and adolescent patients. There is an onsite school room and lessons are led by our public school district’s teachers.
Continuing Care and Levels of Treatment
At Red River Hospital, we begin planning for discharge the moment patients enter the hospital. This plan is consistently reviewed and updated throughout the individual’s stay so that, when the time for discharge arrives, the patient is already set up for the next step in his or her recovery process. We believe that aftercare is a major part of treatment, so we ensure that the unique needs of each individual will be cared for, whether that be a step down into our partial hospitalization program (PHP) or our intensive outpatient program (IOP), or being provided with referrals for traditional outpatient services. For patients who require a structured plan in order to return to life’s daily routines, Red River also provides onsite therapy through our Pathways program which includes coping skills training and supervised medication management. Whatever your needs may be, our caring and compassionate staff will make sure that you are comfortable and confident as you embark on your next stage of recovery.