With the rampant abuse and addiction to opioids, it can be difficult to pinpoint one single cause or a specific solution that will help people quit. People may start using opioids for a number of different reasons depending on their situation and there can be a wide range of factors that can be helpful in recovery. However, one common theme in many situations with opioid abuse is the workplace and employment.
The opioid epidemic is currently creating a crisis in the workplace in a number of different ways. People who are injured on the job and are given prescription opioids may start to become addicted. Some may need to take time off work because of their injury and end up losing their job because of their absence.
Employment or issues with employment may be one of the keys involved in the opioid crisis for many Americans. Those struggling with addiction may find it difficult to find work which causes them to continue their drug abuse. The cycle of job loss and unemployment is something to consider in both the causes of opioid addiction and solutions for recovery.
Employment and the Opioid Crisis
The workforce and the rising opioid epidemic have become two closely connected issues that influence each other. Drug addiction, especially opioid abuse, has been a significant factor in the slow recovery of the employment economy. Addiction has also led to stagnant labor markets and has proven to be very costly to the U.S.
There also have been rising issues of employees struggling with opioid addiction who are failing to perform well on the job. Others are unable to find gainful employment because they cannot pass the employer’s drug test, leaving a shortage of employees for some companies. Even those who had been successful employees in the past are starting to struggle at work when they develop an opioid addiction.
Another issue related to employment is that many individuals who are dealing with an addiction may find it hard to get back on their feet if they have lost their job. Once their opioid abuse progresses it may cause them to lose their employment and be unable to find more work due to their issues with drugs. The use of opioids is one of the key factors driving issues with unemployment which leads to even more drug use.
Getting Sober and Back to Work
One of the biggest factors in resolving issues with addiction is finding steady employment that can be maintained through sobriety and dedication to a strong work ethic. People going through opioid recovery need to learn how to work again be able to perform well on the job. Someone who is able to stay committed to a stable work schedule is much less likely to experience a relapse.
Working is a part of a healthy daily routine and it is crucial for people in recovery no matter what they are going through. Going to work for regular hours gives people a sense of purpose and helps them avoid boredom and too much free time which can be dangerous for people with addictive tendencies. Having a job helps people be more productive in general and less likely to slip into inactivity and depression.
For many people dealing with opioid addictions, their lack of employment could have contributed greatly to their situation. Being unemployed can have a negative impact on self-worth and lead to feelings of depression and anxiety. Some might turn to self-medication through legal or illegal substances to help alleviate their distress.
Once someone is able to work again it can help boost their confidence and make them more self-reliant. They will find it easier to avoid issues such as self-medication because they have less worries and self-esteem problems overall. Of course being employed is not the only factor in recovery success but it is crucial for someone to find work in order to combat their addiction.
Recovery is a long process and the first step is always entering detox and treatment. Many rehab programs offer assistance with helping patients find employment either during or after their stay in the program. This kind of assistance is often necessary for people who haven’t worked for some time due to their issues with addiction.
For those that struggle with opioid abuse, it is crucial to work on sobriety first before returning to work. Working while still addicted to drugs is dangerous both for addiction and your ability to continue your employment. Once you are healthy and sober then returning to work will be a crucial step in maintaining your new lifestyle.
Making efforts to reduce opioid abuse can help improvement the employment situation in the U.S. and having more work opportunities for those in recovery may help combat the opioid epidemic.