How To Deal With Opioid Withdrawal
People who would like to stop using opioid drugs often wonder how to avoid withdrawal symptoms. The truth is that if you attempt to withdraw from opioids on your own, without any formal treatment, you will likely experience uncomfortable withdrawal side effects, which may even lead you to return to using opioids. The best way to manage withdrawal from opioids is to seek professional treatment to help you throughout the process.
Opioid Withdrawal Treatment
If you’re seeking treatment for opioid misuse, detox is often the first step in the treatment process. Some people may be able to attempt an at-home detox from opiates, but the reality is that withdrawal symptoms are usually so uncomfortable that people are more successful when they seek professional intervention. In some cases, withdrawal can be severe, and it’s important to have medical support to prevent complications.
A professional detox program can make opioid withdrawal more manageable. Doctors and medical staff at a detox center will monitor your opioid withdrawal symptoms and provide support and medications to alleviate withdrawal symptoms.
Medications are used in the treatment of opioid withdrawal to reduce symptoms and drug cravings and make patients more comfortable as their bodies undergo opioid detox. Two medications commonly used in opioid withdrawal include methadone and buprenorphine. These medications are typically started in higher doses, which are tapered off over time as withdrawal symptoms subside.
People may be given a daily maintenance dose of buprenorphine or methadone after they have undergone detox, as a part of medication assisted treatment for opioid use. In this type of treatment, people take medications on an ongoing basis, while participating in counseling and other services, to manage drug cravings and help them stay in recovery.
Before beginning buprenorphine, it is important to ensure that enough time has passed since the last use of opioids, because taking the medication too soon can cause withdrawal symptoms to appear. A doctor can help you determine the best time to start buprenorphine.
When thinking about entering opioid addiction treatment, people often have many questions, such as, “How long does withdrawal from pain pills last?” Find answers to this and similar questions below.
Can I Quit Opioids Without Experiencing Withdrawal Symptoms?
Opioid withdrawal occurs when people develop a dependence on opioid drugs. If you have been taking these medications only for a short period of time and have not developed a dependence, you may not experience symptoms of withdrawal. Talk with your doctor if you are concerned about withdrawal symptoms or would like guidance regarding discontinuing your medication.
If you have been taking opioids on an ongoing basis, or you have been misusing these drugs, you will experience withdrawal symptoms if you are dependent on the opioids and abruptly stop taking them. When you have an opioid dependence, it is unlikely that you will be able to stop using these drugs without experiencing withdrawal symptoms, but seeking professional treatment and taking drug withdrawal medication can make symptoms less severe.
What Opioid Drug Causes The Most Severe Symptoms?
The severity of opioid misuse and withdrawal symptoms will vary based upon the amount of drug you have been using, and how long you have been using opioids. Chronic opioid use is linked with a higher risk of dependence and withdrawal.
All opioid drugs can lead to severe withdrawal symptoms when a person abruptly stops taking them. That being said, people may find that misusing illegal opioids like heroin may lead to the most severe symptoms, because heroin can be laced with other substances.
When Should I Call For Help With Opioid Withdrawal?
If you have been using opioids, whether illegally or prescribed, and you find that you are using larger amounts than intended, continuing to use even in the face of serious consequences, and experiencing strong drug cravings, you likely have an opioid use disorder and would benefit from reaching out for professional treatment. Only a doctor or addiction professional can diagnose and treat an opioid use disorder.
If you have an opioid use disorder or are dependent on opioid medications, it’s important to seek medical intervention to help you stop using. In fact, the FDA has warned of serious reactions, like uncontrolled pain, psychological distress, and suicide among people who abpruptly discontinue their opioid medication or reduce their dose.
If you’re taking prescription opioids, a doctor can provide guidance regarding gradually reducing your dose so you can safely taper off the medication. If you’ve been misusing illegal opioids or prescription pain pills purchased off the streets, it’s still important to seek care from a professional detox program to help you manage withdrawal side effects.
How Long Do Painful Withdrawal Symptoms Last?
The length of opioid withdrawal symptoms can vary based upon the type of opioid drug you have been using. Withdrawal from short-acting opioids like heroin tends to last for 7 to 10 days. Symptoms of withdrawing from longer-acting opioids can last up to 2 weeks or more.
What Are The Symptoms Of Withdrawal From Painkillers?
Painkillers belong to the opioid class of drugs, which means that you can expect opioid withdrawal symptoms, such as sleep disturbances, watery eyes, dilated pupils, anxiety, irritability, yawning, muscle and bone pain, upset stomach, nausea, chills, goosebumps, and weakness while undergoing withdrawal.
What Does Going Through Withdrawal Mean?
When you go through withdrawal, it means that your body is reacting to detoxing from a drug. Opioid withdrawal means that your body is out of balance, because it was dependent upon opioids and no longer has opioids in the system. As your body adjusts to no longer having opioids, you will experience uncomfortable withdrawal side effects.
What Medication Is Best For Withdrawal?
Buprenorphine and methadone are often used to treat opioid withdrawal. Your doctor can help you to determine which medication is the best fit for your needs.
Recover From Opioid Misuse With Confidant Health
If you’re looking for resources for opioid misuse, Confidant Health can help. We offer online medication assisted treatment for opioid use, so you can recover without leaving home. Download our app today, available on both the Apple Store and Google Play Store, to begin receiving virtual medication assisted treatment to keep you committed to your recovery.