With over 10 million individuals in the United States misusing opioids in 2019 alone,1 you may know someone in this situation and wonder if a person can beat opioid addiction.
Opioids are a group of drugs that provide pain relief and evoke feelings of euphoria and calmness. While these substances have helped many individuals alleviate pain when recovering from an injury or health condition, they can have devastating consequences when used without the supervision of a medical professional. Read on to learn more about this substance and find our four-step guide to beating opioid addiction.
The Dangers Of Living With Opioid Addiction
Opioid addiction is a type of substance use disorder in which an individual grows physically or mentally dependent on using opioids. Opioids include prescription drugs like oxycodone, morphine, methadone, and hydrocodone, as well as illegal drugs like heroin. When struggling with addiction, users use opioids recreationally or in quantities higher than prescribed.
While overdoses happen on alcohol, cocaine, and methamphetamine, opioids are the most common culprits due to their potency and effects on slowing down the respiratory system. 70.6% of drug overdose deaths were attributed to opioid drug use in 2019.2 This makes opioids one of the most dangerous and life-threatening drug addictions to suffer with.
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Signs and Symptoms Of Opioid Addiction
Due to the dangers and highly addictive nature of opioid use, it is critical to recognize when addiction occurs in you or a loved one. Signs of opioid addiction include:
- Lack of control of quantity and frequency of opioid use
- Fatigue and issues with sleeping
- Financial troubles and stealing from loved ones
- Shaking, sweating, and chronic constipation
- Decreased motivation and ability to manage responsibilities
Can Someone Beat Opioid Addiction?
With addiction relapse rates sitting at 40-60%3 and one study revealing a shocking 91% relapse rate for those struggling with opioid addiction, 4 many users can feel discouraged and are left wondering if it is possible to truly beat their opioid use disorder.
Even though these statistics reveal just how difficult recovery can be, it is entirely possible to heal from opioid addiction with the help of addiction professionals and support from loved ones. Although the journey towards recovery takes time, effort, and a lot of internal work, it is entirely worth it to return to a more healthy, happy, and fulfilling life.
4 Strategies For Recovering From An Opioid Addiction
The difficult but necessary first step in beating an opioid addiction is admitting you have a problem and need help. From there, follow these four proven steps for tackling an opioid addiction head-on:
#1: Start With A Medically Supervised Detox
Before enrolling in a treatment program, it is essential to start with a medically supervised detox. The drug detoxification period is when the body is weaning off a substance and is necessary for those that have developed a physical dependence on a drug. Medically supervised detoxing ensures that you are comfortable through the withdrawal period and are monitored for any adverse withdrawal reactions.
#2: Enroll In A Opioid Rehab Program
Enrolling in a professional drug and alcohol rehab program is essential for those struggling with opioid addiction. Rehab is a tranquil time away from the people or places that encourage the individual’s opioid misuse. Additionally, it grants them access to new tools, professionals, and resources that help navigate their recovery.
While a rehab program doesn’t entirely prevent relapses from occurring in the future, one study found that individuals enrolled in a six-week inpatient treatment program had significantly delayed relapses from their opioid use than those who didn’t.4 When someone follows inpatient treatment with a reputable outpatient addiction program, the risk of relapse can decrease. Some of the services offered at a program that improves long-term recovery success include:
- Individual and group therapy
- Relapse prevention education and planning
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy
- Life skills training
#3: Tackle Co-Morbid Mental Health Conditions
When an individual struggles with both opioid addiction and a mental health condition, it is even more difficult to maintain sobriety. This is because it is all too common for those with anxiety, bipolar, depression, and other conditions to use drugs as a means of coping and numbing out distressing symptoms.
By treating both addiction and mental health disorders simultaneously, studies found a higher abstinence rate and decreased psychiatric symptoms.5
#4: Lean On Others For Support
One of the best strategies for coping with opioid addiction is leaning on others for support and guidance. Look for a 12-step program meeting to attend, find sober events in your area, or work with a sponsor to keep you accountable for your sobriety and goals.
Beat Your Opioid Addiction With Desert Cove Recovery Today
If you or a loved one is struggling with opioid addiction, Desert Cove Recovery will be with you every step of the way. To learn more about our intensive outpatient treatment programs, don’t wait to contact our compassionate team today.