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Drug overdoses claimed 2,411 lives in Illinois in 2016. Substance use, addiction, and overdose fatalities continue to cause problems among the state’s population, but effective addiction treatment options are available.

Illinois Substance Use Statistics

Opioids are a growing issue in Illinois and across the country, from prescription painkillers (OxyContin, Vicodin) to synthetic opioids (fentanyl, U-47700) and heroin.

Opioid Use

Opioid overdoses increased 82 percent from 2013 to 2016. Illinois saw 1,946 opioid overdose fatalities in 2016.

In 2017, Illinois experienced 2,109 opioid-related overdose fatalities, 1,154 of which were caused by heroin alone.

An additional 13,395 survivable overdoses related to heroin and other opioids occurred in 2017.

Alcohol Use

Alcohol use and addiction have remained a fairly constant problem in Illinois.

In 2014, 38,822 people were arrested for drunk driving in Illinois. That year, 11,731 people died in alcohol-related car accidents nationwide—one life lost every 53 minutes.

Of the 9,000-10,000 accidental deaths occurring in Illinois each year, 40 percent of the fatalities are related to alcohol.

The state’s expenses associated with mortalities caused by alcohol, drugs, and tobacco exceed $3.5 billion each year.

Illinois’ Addiction Prevention Efforts

Illinois has established several needle-exchange programs. Three are located in Chicago, and Springfield, Kankakee, Champaign, and Belleville each have one location. These harm-reduction efforts decrease the spread of bloodborne illnesses.

Illinois also passed a law in 2015 to increase access to naloxone (Evzio, Narcan) statewide. Naloxone is a medication that can temporarily reverse the effects of an opioid overdose, allowing time to seek life-saving medical care.

Naloxone is typically only available via a prescription, but a new standing order allows pharmacists to dispense the medication to anyone at risk of an opioid overdose or to anyone who is caring for someone at risk, without a prescription.

Illinois Addiction Treatment Programs

Substance use destroys thousands of lives and countless relationships and careers across the country each year. Fortunately, effective addiction treatment is available to help Illinois residents find recovery.

Addiction treatment programs may include some or all of the following continuum of care:

  • Intervention services
  • Detox
  • Inpatient drug rehab
  • Outpatient addiction treatment
  • Sober living programs
  • Aftercare services

An assessment performed by a healthcare practitioner or addiction treatment specialist can determine what level of care is the best match for a person’s unique needs and situation. Depending on the nature of the addiction, a person may find lasting sobriety through participation in all levels of care, gradually stepping down intensity and frequency of therapy over time.

Intervention Services

Professionally led interventions have a high success rate of convincing someone with a substance use disorder to seek treatment. Trying to conduct an intervention without professional help can backfire, as the conversation can quickly become heated and cause the loved one to become defensive.

The entire intervention process can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks, depending on travel and planning. The family and other participants meet with the interventionist to create a plan and outline the details of the conversation. Then the family decides when and where the intervention will be held and determines an appropriate treatment center that their loved one can immediately check in to.

Drug And Alcohol Detox In Illinois

Depending on the severity of the addiction, Illinois drug and alcohol detox may be a person’s first step toward recovery. Although detox is not addiction treatment, for many people it is the first step as it prepares the body for sobriety and allows the mind to focus on the therapy that follows.

During a drug and alcohol detox program, the substance is withheld, typically causing the body to go into withdrawal as it adjusts. Withdrawal symptoms differ depending on the substance and the person. Symptoms can range from mildly unpleasant headaches to life-threatening seizures and coma.

Medically supported Illinois detox programs monitor withdrawal symptoms and provide support, often offering medications to decrease or prevent withdrawal symptoms. Detox programs can last a few days to a few weeks.

Drug and alcohol detox breaks any physical dependency on drugs or alcohol, but cravings can last for weeks, months or even years. Relapse-prevention skills learned during the next stages of addiction treatment help a person learn to cope with cravings and prevent a return to drug use or drinking.

Illinois Inpatient Drug And Alcohol Rehab

Illinois inpatient addiction treatment provides intensive care in an immersive and supportive atmosphere. Clients attend therapy, support groups and recovery activities full time and reside on site for the length of treatment.
Inpatient addiction treatment protects clients from environmental triggers that can motivate a relapse. Illinois inpatient drug and alcohol rehab programs last 30 days to 90 days or longer.

Outpatient Addiction Treatment

Illinois outpatient addiction treatment programs offer a more flexible schedule for those who are highly motivated to recover and who have a strong support network at home. Clients attend therapy during the day and return home or to a sober living facility in the evenings.

While outpatient drug and alcohol rehab programs allow clients to maintain work and family obligations, they do not protect against triggers or offer as much support as an inpatient drug rehab program. Outpatient addiction treatment can provide an important stage of support for those who have completed an inpatient program and are transitioning back to independent living. Illinois outpatient drug rehab programs typically last 30, 60 or 90 days.

Sober Living Programs

After completing inpatient or outpatient addiction treatment, a person may choose to continue receiving support by engaging in a sober living program in Illinois. These programs offer varying levels of structure, sometimes including therapy and support groups but often simply providing a safe living environment where all residents are sober.

Just a small step from being back to fully independent life, sober living facilities allow residents to work and lead a normal life while following established house rules about substance use, shared household duties and curfews.

Aftercare Programs

Alumni groups or aftercare services offered through a person’s treatment center is an excellent way to stay in contact with support groups after treatment has ended. Alumni care provides support, recovery resources and more for as long as a person can benefit from it.

Addiction Treatment Therapies Used In Illinois

The following therapies are widely used in addiction treatment programs:

  • Individual counseling
  • Behavioral therapy – cognitive-behavioral therapy, dialectical behavior therapy, motivational interviewing
  • Group therapy sessions
  • Dual-diagnosis treatment for co-occurring mental health disorders
  • Gender-specific treatment groups
  • Complementary therapies – yoga, acupuncture, equine therapy, biofeedback, adventure therapy, meditation
  • Life skills development
  • Family involvement
  • Medication-assisted treatment
  • Trauma-informed care

Illinois Addiction Treatment Payment Options

One of the top reasons many people fail to enroll in drug treatment programs is because they think they can’t afford it. However, this is typically not the case.

One of the best ways to pay for addiction treatment is by using private health insurance coverage. Addiction treatment is a covered behavioral health benefit under most insurance plans, as is a treatment for any co-occurring mental health disorder. Coverage benefits and out-of-pocket expenses vary from provider to provider, and what insurance plans are accepted differ between treatment centers.

Health insurance providers offering medical insurance in the state of Illinois may include:

  • Ambetter (Celtic Insurance Co.)
  • Cigna
  • Health Alliance Medical Plans, Inc.
  • Health Care Service Corporation (Blue Cross Blue Shield)

Additional payment options include:

  • Self-pay with cash or credit cards
  • Medical loan
  • Government grants
  • Scholarships
  • Sliding-scale fees based on income
  • Payment plans established with the treatment provider

Traveling For Addiction Treatment

When seeking help for a substance use disorder, many people first seek out the treatment center closest to home. While evaluating the options, keep in mind that the best treatment center for a person’s unique needs might not be around the corner.

The benefits of traveling for addiction treatment include:

  • Access to higher-quality care
  • Decreased environmental triggers
  • Improved focus on treatment and commitment to recovery
  • Increased privacy

Vertava Health offers effective, compassionate treatment in several states across the country, and we can help people find the care they need—wherever they are.