“Opioids” is a term that covers a wide variety of drugs. Most opioids are prescriptions that doctors give to patients who are in pain; for example, patients who are recovering from surgery or who have chronic pain conditions like arthritis. Other opioids are illegal and/or synthetic.
Specific opioids include:
Heroin is an illegal opioid and does not have a therapeutic purpose. Fentanyl is a powerful and dangerous synthetic opioid with an extremely high risk of overdose and death.
Opioids of any kind can be deadly. When prescription drugs are abused, they’re not taken at the dosage a doctor would recommend and can quickly send an opioid user into overdose. Opioid abuse has become an epidemic in the U.S.. It’s widely referred to as the “opioid crisis” or the “opioid epidemic.” Over 10 million Americans over age 12 misused opioids in 2018. Every day 130 people die from an opioid overdose.
Opioids may be the most dangerous drug of abuse. If you or a loved one is abusing opioids, it’s important to seek treatment immediately.
How Do You Know If You’re Addicted to Opioids?
Many opioid addicts begin taking them innocently. They may have been recovering from a medical procedure or injury and taking their prescriptions at an appropriate dose. Unfortunately, opioids produce powerful feelings of euphoria. If taken even once at a higher dosage, they can result in a high that makes you want more.
Opioids, like many other drugs, create tolerance. This means the next time you take the drug, you’ll need a higher dose to achieve the same high. Some opioid users start to abuse heroin or fentanyl instead, which contain more opiates per dose than pills. Using heroin or fentanyl intravenously produces a quicker high and greatly increases your risk of overdose.
There are many physical, emotional, and behavioral signs of opioid addiction. A few of the most significant ones are:
- Being unable to stop using opioids, even if you want to
- Withdrawing from friends and family, and forming new friendships with people who share your addiction
- Spending more time every day in activities related to obtaining, using, or recovering from opioids
- Suffering performance in school or work
- Having withdrawal symptoms when you go too long without opioids
How Do You Recover from an Opioid Addiction?
In order to recover from an opioid addiction, you need to learn what drives the addiction in the first place. This is best done in a treatment program.
People commonly use opioids because they’re coping with mental health symptoms. Co-occurring disorders refer to a substance abuse problem and mental health problem occurring at the same time. In these cases, it’s important to treat both disorders at once.
What Path of Treatment Is Right for You?
Treatment is always necessary for making sure you don’t relapse on opioids. Footprints to Recovery offers several options to fit the nature of your addiction, as well as your lifestyle. They are:
- Basic outpatient treatment – Our lowest level of care is basic outpatient. It involves three hours of programming one or two days per week. Programming includes individual, family, and group therapy, and participants choose between day and evening schedules. This program is a good fit for those with work, school, or family responsibilities, or as a step-down from higher levels of care.
- Intensive outpatient – Our intensive outpatient program, or IOP, is more intensive than basic outpatient. It includes the same amount of programming per day as basic outpatient but is held three to five days per week. It’s often recommended for people with more severe addictions, but not those who require more intense care, like that of inpatient treatment or a PHP.
- Partial hospitalization—Partial hospitalization (PHP) involves spending half your time in treatment and the other half at home. It’s a step down in the level of care from inpatient rehab and requires the greatest time commitment while still allowing you to go home each night. There are six hours of programming per day six for five days a week.
Do You Need to Detox from Opioids?
If you have a physical dependence on opioids (which is likely), you may need to detox. Withdrawing from opioids isn’t usually dangerous, but it’s uncomfortable, and intense cravings are common. Many people give up during detox and relapse. When you withdraw from opioids in a medical detox program, health professionals can offer medications, like methadone or buprenorphine, that soothe withdrawal symptoms and make it easier to quit.
Footprints to Recovery offers a safe and supportive medically supervised detox program. You may receive medications to ease your withdrawal symptoms and make detoxing as comfortable as possible. Whether or not you have medication-assisted treatment, the experts in medical detox will monitor you and step in if you need help.
What Happens When You Get to a Footprints to Recovery Facility with an Opioid Addiction?
Depending on the severity of your addiction, we may recommend you begin with detox. Once the drugs are out of your system, we’ll work with you to identify the treatment program that best meets your needs. We always recommend going from detox into a treatment program. Otherwise, your risk of relapse is very high.
You need to develop a relapse prevention plan, taking into account your unique triggers, warning signs, and coping skills. Our trained therapists work with you to develop a treatment plan and a relapse prevention plan that meet your needs and help you plan for a successful recovery.
What Is Recovering from an Opioid Addiction Like with Footprints to Recovery?
Footprints to Recovery offers a wide variety of treatment approaches from therapies such as DBT (dialectical behavior therapy), motivational interviewing, EMDR (eye movement desensitization and reprocessing), and many more. You can learn more about each of these on our Approach page.
Building a successful and happy life free of opioids means replacing the drug with healthier habits and coping skills. That’s why we incorporate wellness activities into treatment too. Examples of these include:
- Many more
You have the freedom to decide which fit your sobriety and lifestyle best.
We know a community of supportive, like-minded peers can make all the difference in keeping you motivated. While your treatment plan is individualized, you will learn and grow alongside a supportive community of peers with whom you can share your struggles and joys.
How Long Does Recovery from Opioid Abuse Take?
How long withdrawal symptoms last depends on the type of opioid you’re addicted to. For prescription opioids, the last symptoms fade in 5 to 10 days. For heroin, they generally fade after a week. However, some symptoms may linger for months.
Recovery is different than withdrawal, though. Recovery means learning to stay sober, and it’s a lifelong process. Staying sober from opioids in the face of new life challenges and temptations can be more difficult than detoxing was. That’s why it’s important to attend alumni meetings, 12-step programs, or another support programs on an ongoing basis.
Does Footprints to Recovery Accept My Insurance?
We understand paying for treatment is a significant concern. Footprints to Recovery accepts most major insurances. We work directly with your carrier, making things simpler and less stressful for you. Verifying your insurance with us allows us to begin that process long before you arrive.
What If You Don’t Have Insurance?
We believe addiction treatment should be accessible for everyone. You can apply for full or partial financing through Prosper Healthcare, with whom we partner. They help us ensure everyone who needs it can attend treatment, regardless of their financial situations.
What Happens When You Leave Footprints to Recovery?
We have two programs available to support treatment program alumni:
- Sober living and recovery homes – These independent living residences are designed especially for our alumni. They provide sober, structured, and supportive environments to help you readjust to life in the community.
- Alumni community – Our alumni groups offer opportunities to connect with other alumni of our programs in fun, community-fostering ways. They also provide a safe place to process new challenges that come up in each participant’s recovery journey.
Opioid addiction is a deadly, difficult habit to break. Don’t risk one more day addicted. Give us a call and begin your recovery journey today.