Fully understanding opiate withdrawal is dependent on knowing the facts about opiates and why they have become one of the most widely abused substances in history. Opiates are prescription painkillers that work by interfering with the brain’s natural response to pleasure or pain. In large doses, they create a euphoric state desired by those who abuse the drug. These drugs are highly addictive. Therefore, they fall under the Schedule II classification determined by the Controlled Substance Act (CSA).
Opiates derive directly from opium found in the pods of the poppy plant. Whereas, opioids are synthetic compounds created to emulate opiates. Examples of the most widely used opiates and opioids include:
These drugs are highly addictive and withdrawal symptoms appear when the drug is withheld. Typically, opiate withdrawal involves early physical and emotional reactions such as:
- watery eyes
- runny nose
- excessive sweating
- sleep disturbances
- muscle aches
As withdrawal progresses, the symptoms increase to more challenging stages such as rapid heartbeat, high blood pressure, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Usually, these symptoms begin to improve within 72 hours, however, it is best to undergo opiate withdrawal under professional care.
Benefits of Professional Opiate Detox Programs
Many factors contribute to determining whether a person suffers a mild or severe withdrawal process. Each person reacts to detox differently, however, in most cases, professional detox if the wisest choice. A professional facility ensures 24/7 monitoring of symptoms. This can be of significant importance in cases involving physical or emotional issues along with the addiction. Dual-diagnosis patient required professional treatment in a facility equipped to address these factors simultaneously.
Withdrawal is a stressful time. For that reason, opiate detox facilities provide a soothing environment that is free from any drug activity. Compassionate staff and trained addiction specialists are available around the clock to make sure each patient gets the high level of care they deserve. A variety of relaxation techniques helps patients alleviate some of their stress and fear. Additionally, many detox programs provide nutritious meals, vitamin therapy, massage therapy, music and art therapy, and acupuncture. The goal is to provide comfort, support, and compassion to the patients during this difficult and sensitive time. All things considered, detox must include a rehabilitation program to avoid the possibility of relapse.
Why is Rehab Necessary Following Detox?
Simply put, detox addresses the physical aspect of addiction. Rehab addresses the emotional and spiritual aspects. Detox isn’t a cure for addiction, however, it is the first step in recovery. The next step involves 30, 60, 0r 90 days in an inpatient facility where the person learns about addiction and how to avoid going down that path in the future. Various daily activities and classes help recovering addicts learn life skills, understand triggers and how to avoid them, and gain the confidence they will need to step back into the world as a sober person.
Each rehab program has a different approach or philosophy regarding treatment methods. Specifically, some programs offer medication to help with withdrawals. Others prefer a more natural, holistic approach. Patients may choose faith-based programs that allow them to reconnect with their religious convictions during recovery or one that focuses on spirituality without the need for a particular deity to be worshiped.
Notably, the important thing about diverse program options is that it provides patients the opportunity to create a program that best suits their needs and interests. Some of the options include music and art therapy, exercise and fitness routines, martial arts, yoga, meditation, weekly church services, and much more. Furthermore, no one endures a rigid program that makes them uncomfortable. Patients get the personal level of attention they require on an individual basis.
What is Being Done to Control Opiate Abuse?
Scientists work diligently to create versions of these substances that are less likely to be abused. In particular, one method involves the crush-proof formulation of Oxycontin introduced in 2010. The product is harder to crush and this acts as a deterrent to people crushing capsules and injecting the drug. Unfortunately, the product failed to make a significant difference. In effect, the individuals turned to using heroin rather than deal with the problems created by the new capsules. As a result, the US is in the midst of a heroin epidemic of unrivaled proportions.
Recently, the daily news reveals an unusually high number of heroin overdoses in a short period of time. For example, 78 heroin overdose cases were reported in Cincinnati, Ohio last week. Similarly, in Milwaukee last week 20 deaths are linked to a heroin overdose. Officials suspect the heroin is laced with an elephant tranquilizer, Carfentanil , which is more 10,000 potent than morphine. Investigations are underway to apprehend the dealers involved in this crime. Additionally, some cities are issuing Public Health Warnings about this deadly substance.
How to Choose the Best Program for Opiate Withdrawal
The best detox program is the one that helps you recover. So, how do you know which one will work? The best approach to selecting a program is to make a list of questions. Next, call a few facilities and compare their answers to your questions. Some of the things you should ask are:
- How long is the program?
- How much does the program cost?
- Do they accept insurance?
- Has the facility received CARF certification?
- Do staff and counselors have the required credentials?
- What are the success rates of the program?
- Which approach to treatment does this facility utilize?
- Are private rooms available?
- Can family members visit or be involved?
- Is aftercare provided?
Of course, there are many more things you will want to know about the program and the facility. For this reason, we invite you to call and speak with one of our representatives today. Someone will be available to answer your questions and offer suggestions. You can choose to undergo a confidential assessment after which, the counselor can recommend a program based on your replies.
Opiate withdrawal is not something you want to endure all alone. Make the phone call today that will put you on a path to overcoming this terrible addiction with the help of skilled, compassionate professionals at your side.