Painkiller addiction causes changes in a person’s brain wiring, especially if he’s been hooked for a long time. That is why it is important to address the problem as soon as possible. And of course, it is not enough to want to stop the addiction – the person should make a decision to stop and seek help.
If you’re a painkiller addict who would like to stop, you can begin with a detox program. Some of the most common detox option include home detox, rapid detox and medical detox.
Often and especially for those who are heavily addicted to prescription painkillers for a considerable period, a medical detox is the most effective choice. This is due to the fact that withdrawal symptoms can be so severe that other approaches won’t work, and the person will only return to his addiction.
Sometimes, a cold turkey withdrawal is not only difficult, but it can also be dangerous for the individual suffering from the symptoms. The goal of medical detox, which is also called inpatient painkiller detox, is to lessen the symptoms, while making sure that the cessation of the opiate addiction Is done in a safe manner.
As soon as a person completes a medical detox protocol, he will usually begin a community-based rehabilitation program that combines medical therapy, one-on-one and group therapy, and other activities that can help in recovery.
Cold turkey is a popular detox option in which your doses will be minimized to zero. Though proven to be effective, this option tends to produce the most powerful withdrawal symptoms. The dose will usually be reduced by about 25% every few days.
Replacement therapy, another detox option, calls for giving the individual a less powerful opiate to stop the original addiction. This can work sometimes, but it’s also dangerous in the sense that the person will only be changing the drug he’s addicted to. In other words, the individual will remain a painkiller addict.
Rapid detox is yet another option for those who would like to stop their painkiller addiction. With this approach, the person will be given opioid antagonist medication that hasten the withdrawal process.
As soon as as the individual has completed the detox program, he can start getting treated for addiction, which is when the causes behind the addiction are identified and addressed.
Because the detox process is highly individualized and therefore different from one person to another, it is hard to tell how long it will likely take. It is also difficult to tell how a detox program might go for any person, although the above information gives an overview of what may be expected.