Opium Detox And Treatment In Yukon
Between the early to mid-1800s, opium was brought to Canada primarily by Chines immigrants traveling to the country for work. Within British Columbia, for example, opium was widely used, and opium dens were operating in Vancouver, Victoria, and New Westminster. Until 1908 opiates and other narcotics were not regulated and the government viewed opium consumption as another way to gain revenue through taxing opium factories. However, by 1908 the Opium Act was passed making it illegal to sell, manufacture, and use opium. Numerous factors led to this bill being passed, with one of them being the number of people becoming addicted to opium. Morphine is the more prevalent and primary alkaloid in opium and heroin was derived from morphine. Throughout history, morphine is used as the precursor in many pain medications prescribed in Canada.
The long-term use of opium inhibits smooth muscle function in the bowels, which causes constipation, as it is the same as every other opiate. A tolerance to opium develops quickly and physical dependence occurs making it difficult to stop using the drugs. An overdose occurs when large amounts of opium are used. The regular use of opium causes sadness, anxiety, depression, hearing damage, damage to the lungs, liver, and brain. Drug users will also experience problems with dependence and infections from intravenous use. Opiates are responsible for countless overdose deaths across the country. In 2016 fentanyl, had made its way to the Yukon. In April of 2016, a warning was issued by the Chief Coroner regarding the first fentanyl-related death in the territory. The presence of the drug in the territory did raise concerns, primarily because of the dramatic increase in illegal fentanyl-related seizures along Canada's borders.
Opiate addiction requires multiple steps of treatment, and the first is withdrawal management or medical detox. Most opiate addicts struggle to become sober because of the withdrawal pain and physical dependence. When an addict overcomes this, they are more able to focus on the therapy. The treatment resources in the Yukon are not as extensive when compared to the provinces. Much of this is because of population size and money. However, there are hospital inpatient programs, outpatient services, and community health programs. Addicts who are seeking long-term residential drug treatment would have to travel to Alberta or British Columbia. Many programs in British Columbia work with the territorial government and help residents who are addicted to opiates.