It can be difficult to stop taking opioids after using or abusing them for a long time. According to the National Library of Medicine, “These drugs… can become habit-forming over time if not strictly monitored by a health professional,” and quitting after becoming addicted to opioids requires a large amount of self-control and, more often than not, a treatment regimen to help change the course of addiction. If you have been abusing opiates or opioids for a long period of time, there are a number of benefits to attending treatment in order to get off these drugs.
Minimizing Withdrawal With Medication
As stated by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, “Medically assisted detoxification is only the first stage of addiction treatment and by itself does little to change long-term drug use.” However, it does help make the experience of entering drug addiction treatment much less difficult, and the medication helps to minimize withdrawal symptoms, cravings, and other issues people just starting out in their recovery often experience.
Many times, the drug clonidine, a hypotensive agent, is used to treat severe symptoms caused by opioid withdrawal. This helps make the experience of withdrawing from opioids much less painful, as many individuals experience muscle, bone, and joint pain after they stop taking the drugs. Methadone and buprenorphine can also be used to treat withdrawal and cravings, as they occupy the opioid receptors in the brain but do not cause the euphoric effects that other opioids cause when taken at specific doses prescribed by a doctor.
In treatment, patients are able to withdraw from opioids much more safely and less painfully. Without these medications, the withdrawal syndrome itself can be very intense, causing “anxiety, nausea, insomnia… fevers, and other flu like symptoms” in addition to the pain (Center for Substance Abuse Research).
Smaller Chance of Relapse
Many individuals relapse back to drug abuse while they are going through withdrawal, simply because the symptoms are so excruciating and difficult. However, patients in treatment for opioid addiction will be monitored for signs of a possible relapse and given medications to minimize the issues that are likely to cause this outcome. In addition, other treatments help teach patients better behaviors toward their cravings and triggers and safer ways to handle their difficult emotions.
The NIDA states, “Relapse rates for addiction resemble those of other chronic diseases,” but they are much lower for those individuals who do receive treatment than those who attempt to end their opioid abuse without medical help. And because opioid relapse can be especially dangerous after or during withdrawal, leading to more overdoses and deaths because the individual’s tolerance has often diminished during the withdrawal syndrome, the minimized possibility of relapse helps protect opioid users from dangerous, even deadly, outcomes.
Better Living Through Behavioral Therapy
Most addiction treatment programs offer some type of therapy or counseling to patients because these treatments allow patients to change their behavior––and their feelings––toward drugs and create better, safer lives for themselves. Behavioral therapy helps patients feel in control of their lives and gives them the strength and the tools to fight their drug addictions.
In addition, these treatments often help uncover other issues tied to the patient’s drug addiction, such as co-occurring mental disorders or experiences from the patient’s past that may have hurt them. In both cases, many people use opioid abuse as a way to cope with these issues, and uncovering and facing them can help ensure that the individual avoids further drug abuse in the future. All problems associated with the addiction must be treated to ensure the best recovery possible, and in addiction treatment, opioid addicts will receive the treatment methods that benefit all of their needs.
Rebuilding a Life After Addiction
Many treatment programs also provide ways in which patients can rebuild other aspects of their lives that may have been hurt by their drug abuse. For example, some programs provide vocational counseling to those who may have lost their job as a result of their opioid use and need to find another. Different types of programs offer different methods, but among some of the most common include:
- Nutritional classes
- Vocational counseling
- Resume building classes
- Legal help
- Aftercare referrals
These classes and sessions can aid individuals in creating a life after addiction and even to start over in many ways, something that is much harder to do without the aid of professionals.
Restoring Trust and Loving Relationships
Support from the addict’s loved ones is a key element of recovery, but many opioid addicts struggle with rebuilding their relationships after their drug abuse has led them to act out in ways that isolated them from their family and friends. In treatment, patients can attend therapy with their spouses or significant others, children, and family members to restore the trust that has often been broken because of their drug abuse.
Family therapy and couples therapy are two very beneficial treatment methods that can help loved ones speak openly to one another and begin to heal. This is incredibly beneficial as it not only helps patients restore their relationships but also gives them the support of their loved ones at a time where they need it the most.
Other Benefits of Attending Opioid Addiction Treatment
Treatment can help addicts in so many ways, including:
- Giving them a safe place to work through and reflect on their recovery
- Surrounding them with individuals who want to see them succeed in quitting opioid abuse
- Offering a number of different treatment methods that can be combined into a personalized treatment program
- Allowing them to see their progress as they remain sober
- Giving them access to medical treatment for issues associated with their opioid abuse
Above all, treatment gives opioid abusers and addicts a second chance to change their lives, something that is much harder without the help of professional treatments and caregivers.
Do You Want to Attend Treatment In Order to Get Off Opiates?
If you want to attend treatment and stop abusing opioids today, call 800-584-3274. We can help you find the right program that fits your needs.