Being addicted to painkillers is now counted as one of the most prevalent conditions in the US and the cases of people being addicted to prescription drugs is increasing at a very alarming rate. Patients take pain medications well after they have been treated for their primary medical condition. This makes them dependent on the drug and even if they wanted to stop, they find it difficult to deal with the debilitating withdrawal symptoms which makes them go back to the vicious cycle of taking pain medications.
Will power alone sometimes is not effective in helping you go cold turkey on pain medications. Not being able to cease the addiction should not be considered a weakness and a failure as the addiction affects the wiring of the brain and how it handles pain. Overcoming painkiller addiction requires a long process and it will help to have a loved one deal by your side to be with you and help you avoid getting back to taking painkillers when you are having a bad day during the withdrawal stage. It is hard, but it can be done. Painkiller addiction is a life threatening medical condition and there’s no better time to start getting better than now.
It is always best to seek professional help when you finally decide to address your addiction to get better. Many people avoid getting help for their addiction for fear of the entire procedure and what it will be like. We have listed the common techniques used to overcoming pain killer addiction so that you will know what to expect and at which points you would think you would likely give up. Going through this with a loved one will help so that you will have the support you need during those bad days.
As mentioned, addiction to pain killers can totally change how your brain responds and has programmed itself to cease function without the presence of the drug. Your nerve cells will degenerate and your body will stop producing endorphins to counter pain because it has become very dependent on pain killer meds. This is reason enough to get you started on treatment because of the long term effect painkiller addiction has on the body.
When you stop taking painkillers, you will go through withdrawal symptoms, the severity of which depends on how long you have been dependent on the drug. You should expect to go through the following:
- Craving for the medication
- Enlarged pupils
- Abdominal pain
- Constant yawning
- Chills, tremors, or shaking
- Body ache
- Agitation and low energy
- Poor appetite
- Flu-like symptoms
Medications for Painkiller Addiction
Most of the time, patients relapse into taking painkillers because they are unable to endure the withdrawal symptoms which lasts for about 2 to 3 weeks. Rehabilitation doctors often prescribe medications to help ease the withdrawal symptoms and avoid the possibility of the patient relapsing and refusing further treatment.
Some of the medications recommended during treatment for painkiller addiction are Methadone, Subutex, Suboxone, and Clonidine. If you feel that you will need help during the detox period, you should talk to your doctor about receiving the said prescriptions to help ease the withdrawal symptoms.
After your body has detoxified and removed all traces of the painkillers that you have been taking, it is important to go through counselling for full recovery. Talking to a medical professional about your addiction will help trace the reason behind your addiction or certain triggers in your life that could drive you back into painkiller addiction.
Counselling is designed to give you the motivation that you need to continue on your way to recovery. Counselling will also help your spouse and family understand your addiction so that they can effectively guide you and support you.