How To Cope With Opiate Withdrawal Symptoms
With more than two million Americans dependent on or abusing prescription pain pills and street drugs, opioid addiction is at epidemic levels in the United States.
Overcoming opioid addiction requires individualized opioid recovery plans that include medication-assisted treatment and drug addiction counseling. During the recovery process, as a drug abuser cuts back on opiates, opiate withdrawal symptoms set in – anywhere from hours after the last dose up to a week or more. Below we outline the signs of opiate withdrawal and how to cope with the symptoms during treatment.
Opiate Withdrawal Symptoms
Opiate withdrawal can be an uncomfortable part of the opioid addiction recovery process. However, professional care and support will help in coping with withdrawal symptoms. The type of symptoms and the timeline of discomfort ranges from patient-to-patient. According to an article by the Mayo Clinic, symptoms from tapering off opioids may include:
- Restlessness or anxiety
- Increased pain
- Trouble sleeping
- Nausea, vomiting or diarrhea
- Sweating or fevers
- Rapid heart rate
- Blood pressure changes
- Hallucinations – seeing, hearing or feeling things that are not present – or seizures
There are several tips for coping with opiate withdrawal symptoms that can help manage the process. Instead of going through opioid addiction alone, seek professional care for additional relief from the discomfort of opiate withdrawal. A.M.C. provides opiate withdrawal treatment through our medication-assisted treatment (Suboxone) and drug addiction counseling.
Opiate Withdrawal Treatment
While trying to stop using opioids, it can be challenging to overcome the cravings – leading to thoughts of giving up on recovery. A.M.C. is committed to providing medication-assisted treatment by administering patients Suboxone. Medications such as Suboxone help suppress withdrawal symptoms and reduce cravings while going through drug detox treatment.
Suboxone is a prescription medication that contains a combination of Buprenorphine and Naloxone. Buprenorphine is a chemical medication and Naloxone blocks the receptors. In other words, this is another way of saying that it sits in the opiate receptors and blocks them to prevent withdrawals. Suboxone, alongside drug addiction counseling and psychosocial support can help patients overcome and manage opioid dependence.
Managing Opiate Withdrawal
Detoxing from opiates should only be done with the supervision of a treatment facility that can provide a safe recovery experience. Aside from professional care, there are a few other coping mechanisms to aid in alleviating withdrawal symptoms. Below are a few tips to provide relief during the withdrawal process:
- Exercise: Exercising provides a natural rush, reduces stress, increases energy, suppresses drug-seeking behavior and improves a patient’s mood. Common exercises to manage opiate withdrawal symptoms include yoga, hiking, walking and strength training.
- Rest: It’s important to get plenty of rest during drug detox. Patients should try to get at least eight hours of sleep each night if possible.
- Healthy Eating: Certain foods help aid in the comfort level during withdrawal. Patients experiencing drug detox should hydrate, eat plenty of proteins, pack their diets with essential fruits and vegetables and avoid saturated fats and processed foods.
- Hot Bath: Taking a hot bath can relieve muscle aches, relax the nervous system and encourage restful sleep.
At A.M.C., our experienced opioid addiction professionals and drug counselors understand the obstacles patients face during treatment, including withdrawal. Using these tips in coping with opiate withdrawal symptoms alongside our comprehensive treatment approach can help drug abusers overcome opiate addiction successfully and comfortably.