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Detox and Treatment for Opioid Abuse in California

The opioid crisis has taken the world by storm, and it has turned many lives upside down. Many doctors prescribe dangerous opioids for any pain, and they fail to consider safer alternatives. Therefore, more and more people become addicted to opioids and opiates every day.

Once an addiction sets in, many people struggle to break free. For most people, an opiate addiction rehab program is their best shot at living a healthy life. If you are currently struggling with opioid addiction, now is the time to learn more about opiate addiction and how to treat it.

What Are Opioids and Opiates?

Opiods and opiatesFirst off, it’s important to distinguish between opioids and opiates. Sometimes, people use the terms interchangeably, but they have slightly different meanings. Opioids are chemicals that affect the opioid centers of your nerves to reduce pain. Opioid drugs can be natural, semi-synthetic, or completely synthetic.

Opiates are simply natural opioids such as codeine, heroin, and morphine. The term excludes semi-synthetic opioids such as hydrocodone, hydromorphone, and oxycodone. It also excludes fully synthetic opioids such as dextropropoxyphene, fentanyl, methadone, pethidine, and tramadol. Heroin, a commonly abused substance, is a semi-synthetic opioid that is derived from morphine. All opiates come from the opium poppy.

Doctors often prescribe opioids to help patients manage chronic pain. In some contexts, medical professionals use morphine in medical emergencies or after serious surgeries. While opioids may be necessary in a medical environment, they can easily result in addiction. Many doctors haphazardly prescribe strong opioids to people who may not need them, and many patients may develop a physical dependence after using an opioid over a prolonged period. Opioid addictions are very difficult to overcome alone, so patients often have to turn to opiate rehab programs.

Why Are Opioids and Opiates Dangerous?

While opioids can effectively relieve pain, they still carry many risks. It is easy to overdose on opioids, and an overdose often results in severe brain damage or death. However, even if someone uses opioids as prescribed, they may still affect the individual’s long-term health. Long-term opioid therapy may result in respiratory problems, sensitivity to pain, immunosuppression, depression, constipation, severe heart problems, tooth decay, and more. Furthermore, opioids affect a person’s ability to think clearly and operate a motor vehicle.

What are the Symptoms and Effects of Opioid Addiction?

Generally, when individuals suffer from addiction, it will eventually result in noticeable behavioral changes. However, some people mask their addiction very effectively, so even someone who seems happy and healthy may struggle with addiction.

Furthermore, although the signs and symptoms below are common among substance-dependent individuals, anyone can exhibit these symptoms for unrelated reasons. Still, if you suspect that a loved one suffers from addiction, then you should help them find a reputable opioid rehab program.

Financial Troubles

Opioids aren’t cheap, so they can quickly drain a person’s wallet. While procuring opioids may be manageable at first, it will eventually take a larger dose to achieve the same effect as a person build’s a tolerance. This can result in unpaid rent, stacking bills, poor vehicular maintenance, and a general lack of funds for everyday activities.

Poor Hygiene

An individual who struggles with addiction may develop severe depression. This may cause them to neglect showering, brushing their teeth, or changing their clothes. On top of that, addiction-related financial difficulties may make a person unable to afford daily necessities such as deodorant, toothpaste, detergents, fresh clothes, and other necessities.

Drowsiness and Sleep Problems

Prolonged opioid use can severely affect a person’s sleep cycle. Drowsiness is a very common side effect of opioids, and bad sleep patterns can make it even worse. If you notice that a friend or family member constantly falls asleep or nods off at strange hours, then that could be a sign of addiction.

Drastic Weight Loss

Although people may lose weight for several reasons, healthy weight loss tends to be very gradual. A bigger problem may be at play when a person loses a bunch of weight over a few weeks or months. Many opioids suppress a person’s natural appetite, so they end up losing a lot of weight because they don’t feel hungry. Furthermore, a person suffering from addiction will likely spend a lot of money to procure their substance of choice, so they may not have enough funds to maintain a healthy diet.

Constant Bathroom Breaks

Constipation is a common side effect of opioid use, and this symptom gets worse with time. After a while, a person may rely on laxatives to properly expel their bowels. People who deal with chronic constipation tend to take frequent bathroom breaks and complain about stomach pain. However, many other medical problems lead to constipation and other digestive issues, so you should only consider this symptom when it’s accompanied by other signs of addiction.

Social Isolation

Once addiction sets in, it takes a central role in a person’s life. This means that they always have to consider their next dose, so they may be unable to engage in regular social activities. Combined with opioid-related depression and financial difficulties, individuals suffering from addiction may not have the drive or means to spend time with friends and family.

Stealing and Dishonesty

As a person’s addiction progresses, they become more and more desperate to get their next dose. However, due to the financial difficulties that result from their addiction, they may not be able to purchase an adequate supply of opioids with their own funds. They may steal money and valuables from friends and family members to fund their addiction out of desperation. Even if a person isn’t actively stealing, they may make up stories when trying to borrow money or be dishonest about their habits and whereabouts.

Misuse of Prescription Drugs

While it may seem obvious, misuse of prescription drugs is a huge red flag. If you hear somebody innocently mention that they took an extra pill to fall asleep or feel better, then you should take that admission very seriously. Often, in the early stages of addiction, individuals struggling with addiction don’t realize that they’ve developed a dependence. Although it may just seem like an extra pill here or there, there’s a good chance that it will eventually spiral into something worse.

Emotional Problems

Any addiction will seriously impact a person’s emotional state. This is especially true when someone who deals with addiction hasn’t had a dose in a while. Depending on the degree of the person’s addiction, symptoms can range from mild irritability to severe emotional volatility. Furthermore, people who suffer from addiction often deal with severe guilt and self-loathing.

Sudden Use of Other Substances

For most people, it’s not practical to use opioids whenever they want to. This is especially true for people who work long hours or spend a lot of time in public. To soothe their cravings, they may try to distract themselves with other substances. If someone close to you has suddenly started smoking cigarettes or drinking more caffeinated beverages than usual, then that may be a symptom of a more serious addiction.

About Opioid Withdrawal

When the body gets used to a drug, it goes into a state of distress when that substance is no longer available. Eventually, the body will adapt to life without the substance, but this process may take a lot of time. Meanwhile, they will experience several difficult symptoms as their body adapts. Therefore, if someone struggles with opioid addiction, then they will quickly go into withdrawal after not consuming opioids for some time.

Opioid withdrawal symptoms are extremely uncomfortable, but they can be more easily managed at an opioid rehab facility. Common symptoms include:

  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea
  • Psychosis
  • Heart palpitations
  • Severe emotional instability
  • Aches and pains
  • Hallucinations
  • Drowsiness
  • Sweating
  • Chills

People with more severe addictions will experience more severe symptoms, and symptoms will show up soon after their last dose. Still, many symptoms are almost universal, and they will continue to worsen over time.

How Can Professional Detoxification Help?

Detoxification is the process of abstaining from a substance so that it can completely leave the body. During the detox process, individuals struggling with addiction will go through severe withdrawal symptoms. Without proper medical supervision, withdrawals can be very hazardous to a person’s health. Furthermore, individuals suffering from addiction will experience strong urges to use opioids during the detox process. 

As a result of these hazards, it’s very important to stick with a reliable opiate addiction rehab program. The addiction professionals and medical personnel at The Key to Recovery will work with you to achieve successful detoxification in a safe and comfortable environment.

What Treatment Options Are Available After Detox?

Once you get through the detox process, a team of professionals will help you manage your recovery from addiction. No two patients are the same, and you will need the right treatment to maintain long-term sobriety. Accordingly, a team of addiction professionals will work with you to find the best combination of treatments for their needs.

Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy and Dialectical Behavioral Therapy

CBT is focused on teaching patients how their thoughts affect their behaviors. Through this therapy, you will be able to recognize how your thoughts and habits have dictated your past actions. With this knowledge, you can make more informed decisions to deal with addiction in the present and future.

Many people turn to drugs to deal with mental health problems and negative relationships. DBT stresses mindfulness, distress tolerance, emotional regulation, and interpersonal effectiveness. These skills can help patients deal with their addiction and mental health at the same time to achieve a happier life.

Fitness and Nutrition

Opioids take a toll on a person’s physical health. Prolonged opioid use can lead to chronic pain, fatigue, and malaise, and these things can affect a patient’s overall wellbeing. In conjunction with other therapies, proper fitness and nutrition will help you improve your physical and mental health.

Experiential Therapy

Experiential therapy differs greatly from traditional talk therapy. Instead of just speaking to a therapist in an office, patients express themselves through music, psychodrama, art, writing, and more. Experiential therapy is typically used in conjunction with talk therapy, and it gives patients an extra outlet to cope with their addiction.

12-Step Program

Many individuals struggling with addiction feel extremely isolated. This can seriously affect their self-esteem, so the collective aspect of a 12-step program may be very beneficial for these patients. During a 12-step meeting, everybody in the group can share their thoughts and struggles without interruption. This allows patients to find camaraderie and contextualize their own thoughts, feelings, and difficulties.

A Happier Life Is on the Horizon

Opioid addiction is unsustainable. As you continue to abuse opioids, your overall health and wellbeing will continue to worsen. You care about your health, so let us help you to overcome this challenge in your life. Therefore, you may want to consider enrolling in The Key to Recovery’s effective residential opiate addiction rehab program. If you want to succeed in recovering from opioid abuse and addiction, then contact us to learn more about our reliable opiate rehab facility. Allow our team to give you the tools you need to win the battle against substance use disorder in your life!

References:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3466038/

https://www.cdc.gov/drugoverdose/opioids/prescribed.html

https://www.cdc.gov/drugoverdose/opioids/terms.html

https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/000949.htm