Sara Bellum
November 21 2013
Photo Credit: DFree/Shutterstock.com

Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino recently opened up about his recovery from painkiller addiction.

Mike says he became addicted to the opioid painkillers he was prescribed after an injury he suffered on “Dancing With the Stars.” In an interview with the Associated Press, he recounts the moment when he knew he was addicted. It was during a family trip to Australia in February 2012, when he ran out of his pills. Mike says:

“All I had to do was get dressed for a family function and I couldn’t do that … The shirt was laid out, the belt, the pants, everything. The shower was on. I couldn’t even get out of bed.” He then realized: “If I can’t do that how am I going to continue?”

Soon after, he entered drug abuse treatment.

Medicine To Treat Substance Abuse  

While in treatment, Mike was prescribed Suboxone—a medication used to treat opioid addiction. Suboxone makes withdrawal safer for people addicted to opioids and reduces their cravings for the drug.

Mike says using Suboxone, combined with counseling, has kept him from relapsing and returning to drug abuse. In fact, he is now a paid spokesperson for the drug and continues to take it to maintain his recovery.

Reset Reality

Mike and the drug company that makes Suboxone launched Reset Reality [link removed], a campaign to increase awareness about opioid addiction. Reset Reality aims to motivate people addicted to opioids like prescription painkillers to seek treatment and “reset their reality.” The Web site features several videos called “Words of Reality”—personal stories from Mike and others in recovery talking about their addiction and how medication-assisted treatment helped them.

Check out NIDA’s Opioid and Pain Reliever Drug Facts for more information about opioid addiction.

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