Combating Morphine Withdrawal in a Residential Detox Center

Published: 06/11/2016 | Author:

As the “granddaddy” of opiate drugs, morphine packs a powerful punch in terms of its pain-relieving effects. Whether taken for treatment purposes or used recreationally, morphine can quickly disrupt the brain’s chemical system. Once this happens, a person will likely experience bouts of morphine withdrawal thereafter. Morphine withdrawal also plays a pivotal role in a developing addiction, which accounts for why so many people require residential detox in order to stop using the drug. Overall, combating morphine withdrawal in a residential detox center has as much to do with the type of treatment a person receives as it does his or her desire to get well.

Morphine Withdrawal Effects

Combating Morphine Withdrawal

Medication and counseling can help you get through morphine detox.

Morphine withdrawal develops out of the drug’s damaging effects on the brain’s chemical processes. These chemicals, also known as neurotransmitters, regulate most all of the body’s major systems so any degree of imbalance can give rise to any number of uncomfortable symptoms.

When morphine is abused, these imbalances cause the brain to become dependent on morphine’s effects to function. Once a person stops using the drug, he or she stands to experience the full effects of morphine withdrawal.

According to the National Library of Medicine, morphine withdrawal effects typically take the form of:

  • Insomnia
  • Hypersensitivity to light, sound and touch
  • Headaches
  • Nausea/vomiting
  • Sweating
  • Chills
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Restlessness
  • Irritability

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Types of Interventions Used in Residential Detox Centers

Residential detox centers treat both the physical and psychological effects of morphine withdrawal. For someone coming off a severe addiction, medication therapies, such as methadone may be administered to help restore chemical balance in the brain. Medication therapies can go a long way towards helping relieve withdrawal and drug cravings effects.

Residential detox centers also employ a range of counseling-based therapies to help a person work through the emotional and psychological effects of morphine withdrawal. Counseling-based therapies not only help you cope with the withdrawal process, but also help you work through the underlying emotional issues that drive compulsive drug use.

In cases of severe addiction, depression and/or anxiety disorders can develop along the way. According to Case Western Reserve University, these conditions only feed into the brain’s “need” for the drug and greatly aggravate morphine withdrawal symptoms. When this is the case, antidepressants, anti-anxiety and even sedative-type drugs may also be prescribed.

Motivation to Get Well

Both the physical and emotional effects of morphine withdrawal can quickly derail a person’s efforts to abstain from further drug use. While the interventions used in a residential detox center offer ample support, your overall attitude and motivation to well ultimately determines your success in the recovery process.

Overcoming morphine withdrawal marks the first step in breaking addiction’s hold over your life. In effect, entering a residential detox center means stepping out of one life or lifestyle into another. The intense drug cravings and emotional turmoil that come with morphine withdrawal can overwhelm even the most determined of individuals, so your motivation to get well can mean the difference between a successful recovery process and an untimely relapse episode.

If you or someone you know are considering residential detox center treatment and have more questions, or need help finding treatment that meets your needs, please don’t hesitate to call our toll-free helpline at 800-483-2193(Who Answers?) to speak with one of our addictions specialists.


  1. U.S. National Library of Medicine. (2016). Opiate and Opioid Withdrawal.
  2. Case Western Reserve University. (n.d.). Integrated Dual Disorder Treatment.
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