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Philosophy 2044G - Apr. 2.docx

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Philosophy 2043F/G
Louis Charland

Philosophy 2044G Wednesday April 2 Drug Addiction Opiate Medications • Example: Heroin, methadone, Oxycontin • They don’t only kill physical pain, but also induce a state of pleasure • Many people are addicted to opiate prescription medications that they got through legitimate means (and now have to go to methadone clinics) • They create physical dependency and craving (you require the drug physically and mentally) Methadone Clinics • Methadone is one of the current accepted treatments for people who have an opiate addiction • In this area (London), people are at methadone clinics solely for prescription opiates (not heroin like in a place such as Vancouver) • Methadone is thought to be a drug (that because it’s an opiate) can substitute for other drugs and prevent the withdrawal and discomfort associated with those drugs • Sometimes people need to remain on these drugs for years because when they stop taking opiates, they don’t feel ‘normal’ o Methadone ‘plugs the holes’ without making people high • In the 1940s and 1950s, methadone was a drug of abuse o Today people still abuse methadone – they may go to the clinic to get their daily dose, and then go and get some illegal methadone from the street • An average treatment may be 2-3 years (but can depend on the person – their vulnerability to drugs and their environment) • There is a stigma surrounding methadone clinics – many didn’t set out to be addicts, but they started taking medication for pain and became addicted The Fifth Estate: Time Bomb • Oxycontin has been turned into a multi-million dollar business • Originally Oxycontin was marketed as a safe narcotic, not being as addicting as Percocet because it had a slow release o It could be used for a long period of time, “a friend for life” • There are about 6 million Canadians who suffer from dail
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