Opioids addiction is a problem that impacts many individuals and families. A fact that is particularly true in the state of Ohio. However, it is possible to recover from opioid use disorders. Here are three general tips to follow in order to provide the best chances for a successful recovery.
#1: Recognize the Signs of the Disease
When people develop an opioid use disorder, this means that they have a problem that centers around opioid-based drugs like oxycodone or heroin. Opioid medications are very effective at relieving pain, but they can also create addiction issues. The use of these substances creates problems and disrupts a person’s everyday activities. People can become psychologically and/or physically dependent on these substances. In the worst cases scenarios, long-term opioid use by individuals can lead to overdose and death.
People must recognize that addiction is a disease and not a moral failing or character flaw. The stigma of addiction is something that individuals, and society, need to overcome. People may have a sense of misplaced shame for becoming addicted in the first place. But this is an incorrect attitude that can make treatment and recovery more difficult to achieve.
The human brain (and body) is encouraged by opioid substances to become accustomed to the drug. Even though the substance is bad for the body, the brain has been tricked into sending signals that it wants more. This uncontrolled craving is one reason that opioid use disorder is challenging to treat without help from a mental health professional. If individuals understand the symptoms of opioid addiction, then they have taken an important first step. A problem cannot be solved unless it is recognized that there is a problem.
During the early stages of addiction, there may be little or no symptoms. However, overtime this will change. Here are some more common signs of an opioid use disorder:
- Unexplainable sweating – occurring with no physical activity.
- Excessive craving for the substance – individuals constantly think about the drug.
- Changes in hygiene – people’s personal appearance takes a negative downturn.
- Disrupted sleep patterns – unexplainable drowsiness or insomnia.
- Changes in usual habits and isolation from friends and family.
- New financial problems – may engage in activities like stealing.
- Displaying flu-like symptoms – this occurs even though they are not sick.
#2: Help from Behavioral Health Professionals:
Opioid use disorders are not something that people should try and treat by themselves. If individuals believe that they may have a problem, they should seek help from a mental health professional. When doing this, people with a suspected opioid use disorder need to have an open and honest conversation with their healthcare provider.
One successful method for treating opioid addiction is to combine medication and mental health counseling. This approach is known as medication assisted treatment (MAT) and is helpful for limiting the withdrawal symptoms from opioids. The use of these medications help individuals heal from the addiction and reduce the temptation to use opioids in the future.
MAT may not be the best fit for everyone, but therapies like this are successful at stopping addiction. The overall goal of treatment plans is to provide people with the best chance of recovery. Often this treatment includes experienced behavioral health counseling that can address the psychological and emotional aspects of opioid addiction. Professional counseling sessions can improve self-esteem, reduce stress as well as focus on avoiding a relapse. In addition, counseling and support groups are an excellent way to include friends and family who are involved in the recovery process.
#3: Understanding Withdrawal from Opioids
People are not always prepared for everything this is involved during the act of opioid withdrawal. Some of these symptoms may include confusion, vomiting, diarrhea and fever. Having access to a structured treatment plan with the guidance from a trained behavioral health professional will make this process easier. It will also provide individuals who are going through opioid withdrawal a better chance of experiencing a successful recovery.
Opioid use disorder can make people feel like they are losing control of their life. But trained healthcare providers and a well-structured treatment program can make recovery an easier task to accomplish. According to government statistics, as of 2018, roughly 10.3 million Americans over the age of 12 misused opioids. Data like this, as well as assistance from healthcare professionals, should remind people that they are not alone in their struggle.
People going through withdrawal should focus on positive emotions and future goals. A healthy lifestyle includes eating better and including regular exercise. For example, studies suggest that exercising for two and half hours a week can promote feelings of better mental health. The correlation for better mental health is even more apparent when people engage in group or team exercise in an outdoor setting.
All individuals who are struggling with opioid use disorders need to remember that recovery is possible.
About Emerald Psychiatry:
Emerald Psychiatry & TMS Center provides behavioral and mental health services near Columbus, Ohio in the town of Dublin. The successful treatment of opioid addiction is one of the specialties. Their staff members understand the complexity of substance use disorders and the related conditions are sometimes associated with these disorders.
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Contributor: ABCS RCM