This week I am sharing a guest post from Bill Weiss, who is the creator and founder of a blog, http://unitingrecovery.com that sheds light on addiction from both opiate drugs and alcohol. I wanted to share an important piece on the withdrawal of Opiate addiction hoping it can help at least one person out there.
Opioid addiction is becoming a serious epidemic in the United States, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Drug overdose is a leading cause of death in the U.S., and a lot of these overdoses are due to opioid abuse.
The root cause of the epidemic seems to be an increased use of opium-derived prescription drugs. Opiate painkillers provide a sort of sedation to the central nervous system. The biological opiate effects include pain reduction but at the cost of a severely compromised nervous system. Popular opiate drugs include Vicodin, OxyContin, Percocet, fentanyl, morphine, and heroin.
While opiate effects tend to produce feelings of happiness and relaxation, the impact of this drug can be devastating. Users who want to quit the drug often find themselves stuck in a cycle of relapse and addiction. Addiction is a disease and opioids are one of the most difficult drugs to break an addiction from.
While opiate addiction has certainly gained a lot of attention in the past decade, the recovery process is not as successful as we would hope. The overall opiate addiction recovery statistics are daunting:
– Opiate use is linked to half of major crimes in the United States.
– Opiate addiction accounts for about 20% of patients at substance abuse facilities.
– 90% of opiate addicts will relapse within the first year of getting clean.
– On average, it takes around 14 years before an opiate user seeks a treatment program.
– The vast majority of people who attempt to break their opiate addiction will relapse within 30 days.
– An estimated 2 million Americans are addicted to prescription opiates, according to the World Health Organization.
So, what are opiates in terms of their impact? The opiate withdrawal timeline may be fairly quick, but it is rough. Those who have successfully broken opioid addiction report on a few phases through withdrawal.
The first phase is called the acute phase. This is an intense period that typically lasts about three days. The side effects of Vicodin, for example, often include symptoms of pain, sweating, muscle ache, insomnia, diarrhea, anxiety, panic attacks, and loss of appetite. It is important to remember that these painful symptoms will eventually pass as long as the user waits it out.
The second phase usually comes in after 3 days and lasts around a week. Users often feel continued cramping, minor aches, shivers, and fatigue. The symptoms should vanish after a week. During this phase of recovery, it’s important that the user has access to the best opiate withdrawal remedies available.
The best way to mitigate withdrawal pain is by finding some effective remedies. These tips should help opiate users overcome their addiction during the withdrawal process:
Dehydration could become a problem during withdrawal, as the user may frequently visit the bathroom. It’s important to avoid dehydration as this could actually worsen the detox period. Sugarless water is the best drink to have during this period.
While addiction is hard to break, former addicts will often say how it was worthwhile in the end. It just takes the right tools and a will to work for it.
Guest blog post: Bill Weiss is the creator and founder of a blog that sheds light on addiction; both Alcohol and drug. Where they offer people resources to learn more about the disease of addiction. Bill is in recovery and has multiple family members who were affected, this is why he takes such an interest in this cause.
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