In this comprehensive guide, you will find information about what opioid withdrawal looks like, what its symptoms are, and how you can receive help during that time.
What Is Opioid Withdrawal?
Still, it's important to note that experiencing opioid withdrawal symptoms after stopping the use does not necessarily indicate opioid addiction. Patients who take prescription opioids may go through the same type of withdrawal symptoms as someone who suffers with opioid addiction and abuse when getting off them, regardless of following their medical provider's recommendations.
It's part of the reason why those who administer opioid medications should closely observe their mental and physical state and adhere to the therapy plan proposed by their physician.
It's also important to take necessary precautions when planning to stop the use of opioid analgesics. It's never a good idea to stop taking opioids abruptly without consulting a medical professional first, as patients treated with these drugs as well as those who suffer from opioid dependence, are at risk of experiencing some uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms, which can disrupt their routines, worsen their mental state and even, in some rare cases, cause life-threatening conditions.
Although opioid withdrawal syndrome, which often is characterized as a flu-like illness, is not usually dangerous for one's health and life, it can cause very unpleasant symptoms which can be difficult to endure without opioid withdrawal management medications. Additionally, untreated opioid withdrawal frequently results in a relapse in opioid abuse.
Opioid Withdrawal Symptoms
Opioid use disorder is a serious condition that can disrupt someone's mental and physical health and, in serious cases, lead to severe health complications and even death.
How Long Do Opioids Stay in the System?
However, if you've been taking slow-release opioids like buprenorphine, you're more likely to go through withdrawal sometime after discontinuing taking opioids, but the symptoms may remain for longer.
Still, opioid withdrawal symptoms appear quickly, only hours after taking the last dose. It's because opioid drugs don't stay for long in the system. Usually, they can be detected up to four days from when the last dose was administered. However, their effectiveness decreases after 6 to 24 hours, and that is when many patients will start to experience first withdrawal symptoms.
Opioid Withdrawal Timeline
The timeline of the opioid withdrawal syndrome can look like this:
The First Two Days
Three to Five Days
Five to Seven Days
After The First Week
Preventing Opioid Withdrawal Symptoms
One of the ways to safely stop using opioids and reduce the risk of experiencing severe withdrawal symptoms is through tapering. Tapering is the process of slowly reducing the doses of opioid medication in order to get your body time to adjust and decrease its dependency on the drug.
Usually, your doctor will create a tapering schedule adjusted to your needs, health condition and health history to help you safely reduce the opioid intake. However, it's important to know this may not be a suitable method for everyone.
In some situations, it might be safer for you to be put on a different medication that is frequently used to treat opioid withdrawal symptoms.
Treatment of Opioid Withdrawal
Medical Withdrawal Treatment
Other Prescription Drugs
Treatment options for mitigating symptoms of opioid withdrawal are available to patients that are in contact with and under the care of medical professionals. That is why it's crucial to consult your health care provider or specialized facility when you want to stop taking opioids.
How Can I Get The Help I Need?
Residential treatment is another highly effective route to treat opioid dependency and withdrawal. In specialized facilities like Miracles Asia, patients receive complex care. From medical assistance during the withdrawal period to physiological support, personalized treatment programs, individual and group therapy, and further counselling to navigate addiction after leaving the treatment, patients receive help at every step of the way to getting better.
Miracles Asia's residential rehab program was created by people with vast experience in treating drug abuse, which means you're in the best hands. We focus on the holistic approach, giving your mind and body everything it needs in this journey.
Our facility is located in beautiful Phuket, Thailand, where, apart from the team of dedicated specialists ready to help you battle the addiction, there are breathtaking beaches, forests and a range of activities awaiting that will allow you to gain back the confidence and put your mind to rest after intensive therapy work.
The Bottom Line
You should always consult your doctor before trying to discontinue the use of opioid medication and follow their recommendations.
Most opioids are highly addictive, so their intake should always be supervised by a medical professional. If you see any signs of opioid dependency, reach out to your physician to talk about the next steps.
If you're interested in the residential program at Miracles Asia, feel free to reach out and contact us. We'll be happy to provide you with all the information that's going to give you the best results for your own situation.