Opiate Withdrawal - Uncomfortable To Downright Painful

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Opiate Withdrawal – Uncomfortable To Downright Painful

Dr. Richard Foster, LICDC-CS

Medically reviewed by

Dr. Richard Foster, LICDC-CS

March 12, 2019

Opiates are a group of very dangerous and extremely addictive drugs that depress the central nervous system and are usually prescribed to help manage pain. Opiates interact with the limbic system of the brain to cause feelings of relaxation and euphoria and works with the nerves in the spinal cord to reduce pain. Withdrawaling from these medications can be extremely difficult and dangerous. It is best to seek professional help before attempting to detox from opiates.

The Difficulty Of Opiate Withdrawal

These drugs cause extreme physical dependency, both in between highs and when trying to stop taking them all together. Over time, addicts end up developing a tolerance to opiates, causing them to use more and more of the drug to produce the same high. When this tolerance develops, the brain can no longer function as it used to and needs the drug to combat even the slightest pain.

Depending on the severity of the addiction, withdrawal can vary from uncomfortable to downright painful.

Mild opiate withdrawal effects include:

  • Muscle aches
  • Insomnia
  • Runny Nose
  • Fever

If an addict has been abusing opiates for a long period of time, they may experience more severe effects.

Severe opiate withdrawal effects include:

  • Abdominal Cramping
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Rapid Heart Rate

Opiates are also psychologically addictive, and those coming off the drug often feel anxiety, agitation, restlessness, and go through a variety of mood swings. These mental effects combined with the physical ones can make withdrawal a very tedious and unpleasant event.

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Opiate Addiction Treatment

Hitting its peak at about 30 hours, withdrawal is the first stage of a recovering addict, and it can last for up to a week. First, they must rid their bodies of the drug, which causes the previously mentioned symptoms. This is often recommended being done under the supervision and care of a doctor so that complications do not occur.

Thus, many experts believe that an inpatient treatment plan in a rehab facility is key to the detoxification process. During this detox, many addicts will receive the medication clonidine to relieve the uncomfortable effects of withdrawal. Buprenorphine has also been used to shorten the length of the detox.

Alongside detox, therapy is given in the form of cognitive behavioral treatment, individual therapy, and group support. Whether you choose a more traditional and faith-based 12-step program or an evidence-based SMART Recovery program, addicts will receive support from doctors, counselors, and others like them. These programs give addicts the necessary tools and coping mechanisms to help them avoid temptation and relapse in the future.

Get Help At RehabCenter.net

If you or a loved one have decided to quit your opiate addiction, you don’t have to face this decision alone. Contact us today, and we will help you find the drug rehab that best fits your needs.

View “Opiate Withdrawal” Infographic

View Opiate Withdrawal Infographic

View 2 Responses to “Opiate Withdrawal – Uncomfortable To Downright Painful”

Hello, my name is KATHLEEN and I’ve have emailed you about 5 times now.
I’m addicted to all my pain MEDS and I know if I keep taking them I’m going to die and I don’t want to die but I can’t stop on my own. I’ve been taking them for over 10 yrs now. I am currently prescribed OXCYCODONE 30 MG 12 times a day, METHODONE 10 MG 20 a day, though to be honest with you I do take up to 35 30mg METHODONE pills a day, I am also on soma 4-5 a day, KLONIPON 1 MG 5-6 a day, Xanax 2 MG in place go the KLONIPON 5 a day and AMBIAN 10mg.
I have tried to stop before but I can’t. I do suffer from a lot of pain but I know if I continue on this path I will die before my time. I’ve called so many places and either they won’t take my health Ins, ( MEDICARE and Medicaid ) or they will take my MEDICARE but for detox only. I know I need longer time in a rehab and not just 5-7 days to detox. I 100 percent admit I need the help, want to get the help but can’t find it. They say the father you go the better off you are to work on yourself. I need your help please help me. Please I’m begging for help.. I am not in denial and I so badly Need help. I am at the end of my ride with these killer pills. I feel like I’m hanging onto the end of a cliff. I pray to God that you get my email and read this real soon. ASAP!!!! I don’t want to die.

Dear Kathie,

Sorry about not getting into a place yet, many of the rehab facilities that work with Medicaid are full and usually have waiting lists. Hang in there, we will be contacting you today to find a facility so you can start your road to a healthy recovery.

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