Millions of Americans suffer addiction to opiates and other pain medications. The recent uptick in the number of people suffering addiction to these drugs stems from many causes. When individuals experience severe pain from injuries or illnesses, doctors often must prescribe medications that contain highly addictive properties.
For patients who suffer from acute pain that is short lived, these drugs often present no addiction problem. The drug serves its purpose—masking the pain—so that patients can rest and recover. However, when patients are confronted with an injury or illness that causes chronic pain, they often must remain on these medications for months or years. When these medications are taken for that length of time, addiction often results.
Addiction results largely from tolerance. Because the body becomes accustomed to these drugs over time, the pain masking effect becomes weaker. The doctor then must prescribe an increased dosage. This results in the patient developing an even higher dependency on the drug. Patients may also develop cross tolerance, which is a tolerance to all opioid drugs, not just the specific one they have taken.
High levels of dependency result in severe withdrawal symptoms when the patient needs to stop taking the medication. Some common withdrawal symptoms include cravings, restlessness, moodiness, insomnia, goose bumps, diarrhea, rapid heart beat, and high blood pressure. These symptoms often grow severe, making it difficult or impossible for patients to stop taking the drug.
Detox helps solve your pain problem
During medically supervised detox, clients receive treatment for withdrawal symptoms. Generally, withdrawal symptoms last from a few days to several weeks. The withdrawal process depends greatly on the individual’s chemical makeup. It also depends upon the type of drug used, as well as the length and quantity of use.
Detox staff prescribes medication that reduces withdrawal symptoms. This allows patients to recover safely and comfortably. Medically supervised detox also involves treatment and monitoring of underlying medical issues.
Because many people withdrawing from medications like Vicodin or OxyContin are experiencing difficult injuries or illnesses, ongoing treatment of those medical issues is necessary. For detox to be successful, patients must not only recover from the withdrawal symptoms but also feel comfortable that their pain is manageable. This prevents relapse.
Chronic pain results from many injuries and illnesses. Though treatment with pain relieving drugs is often necessary, these medicines often leave patients in a state of drug dependency. If you or you loved one has become addicted to pain medication, our counselors are available 24 hours a day. Call 800-737-0933