Benefits of Getting Help for Opiate Detox
Many people feel that they can go through opiate detox on their own. While the syndrome is understood to be uncomfortable by many, the level of difficulty involved with going through opioid detox can be overlooked. This is because the syndrome is, for the most part, “not life-threatening,” making many individuals decide to detox by themselves (NLM). However, there are many benefits to getting help for opiate detox.
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Easy Transition Into Addiction Treatment
If you have been abusing opioids for several months or more and are experiencing withdrawal symptoms when you attempt to stop, you are more than likely addicted. Attending a treatment program for your opioid withdrawal will make it much easier for you to move into addiction treatment which will be necessary if you are addicted to opioids. These programs are specifically meant to facilitate this transition and promote it to patients. The NIDA states, “Medically assisted detoxification is only the first stage of addiction treatment and by itself does little to change long-term drug abuse.”
Also many individuals who do not receive addiction treatment after going through withdrawal wind up relapsing and overdosing on opioids. “Because withdrawal reduces the person’s tolerance to the drug, those who have just gone through withdrawal can overdose on a much smaller dose than they used to take.” This is why opioid detox treatment, and eventual addiction treatment, is much safer than going through withdrawal on one’s own.
Minimizing Withdrawal Symptoms
Just because the withdrawal symptoms associated with opioid dependence are not life-threatening does not mean that they are easy to endure. Many individuals relapse during withdrawal because they no longer want to feel the painful muscle aches and abdominal cramps that occur as a result.
In detox treatment for opioid withdrawal, you will be given medication to help minimize these symptoms and make it easier for you to go through the process of withdrawal. While not as dangerous as other withdrawal syndromes, opioid detox can be extremely uncomfortable without the use of medication, and many individuals are not able to endure it, causing them to turn back to the drug.
The Uncovering of Other Problems
Because most detox centers provide some type of behavioral therapy, you are likely to uncover any other mental disorders you are dealing with in addition to your addiction. The NIDA states, “Mental disorders can lead to drug abuse, possibly as a means of ‘self-medication.'” This is why these mental disorders must be treated as well because, without that treatment, the patient is more likely to relapse.
In detox treatment, these issues can be more easily uncovered. Patients can also be treated for physical issues that resulted from their addictions as well, like the many problems associated with long-term heroin abuse.
There are many benefits of getting help for opioid detox. While you may feel that you can do it alone, there is no reason to deprive yourself of accessible and available help. Many facilities work on sliding-fee scales, and some may even help patients in dire financial situations by providing free treatment. It will make your withdrawal from opioids much easier if you attend a treatment program, and you will be more likely to experience a stronger recovery as well.
- U.S. National Library of Medicine. (2016). Opiate and Opioid Withdrawal.
- National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2018). Treatment Approaches for Drug Addiction.
- National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2018). Comorbidity: Substance Use Disorders and Other Mental Illnesses.