Once some people start taking painkillers to alleviate feelings of pain or discomfort, it can be hard for them to stop. Unfortunately, that feeling of dependency can become an addiction, which can cause serious harm and consequences to a person’s life and health. Overcoming the addiction is difficult and is a process that many struggle with or don’t feel they can attempt. However, breaking the habit is possible with the right treatment.
Becoming addicted to pain medication is serious because the addiction cannot be broken without going through a severe withdrawal. This withdrawal can be terrible for some people because their brain has become dependent on the drug. The following is the physical process of addiction as outlined by Spine-Health.com:
Aside from the physical aspect, other factors contribute to the addiction of painkillers as well. Genetics may play a part in the addiction along with lifestyle. If a person is raised in an environment where drug usage is acceptable or surrounds themselves with people who encourage drug use, then an addiction could very well develop in that person.
When people become addicted to painkillers, they may deny it or try to hide it from others. However, a close examination of their actions will probably give them away. These are the symptoms of an addiction to painkillers:
Going through a withdrawal can be extremely uncomfortable, and even painful, especially for those who have been addicted to painkillers for a long time. Many people quit detox or don’t even start for fear of the unsettling experience of withdrawal symptoms, which include intense cravings, twitching, tremors, vomiting, and severe aches and pains once off the painkillers. The ideal detox process should be:
Because detox is a serious and somewhat complicated process, those suffering form painkiller addiction should not attempt to detox on their own. It’s best to complete a medically-assisted treatment to ensure the most ease and success throughout the process.
One of the most common methods of detox is known as Rapid Opiate Detoxification or ROD. This method entails going under anesthesia so as not to endure the symptoms of withdrawal. High doses of naltrexone are administered to shorten the withdrawal symptoms and when the patient wakes up, his or her body is free of the drug and did not have to experience any unpleasant symptoms.
Another method is called Accelerated Opiate Neuro-regulation or AON, which is a type of rapid detox. In this process, the patient is also administered anesthesia and basically sleeps off the symptoms of withdrawal. But in this case, the patient will feel slightly ill the next day and may experience nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and have little to no energy. However, the patient should feel better after a few days.
Painkiller addiction is not actually as common as you may think it is. And just because you need to use painkillers doesn’t mean that you have an addiction to them or at risk of becoming addicted to them. But if you are taking painkillers and are worried about dependency, follow these tips:
Having an addiction to painkillers can have a serious impact on your physical, mental and even social health. Getting treatment may seem like a tough, scary process but with the right method, recovery can be easier than you think.