symptoms of opiod addiction

The Common Symptoms of Opioid Addiction Explained

symptoms of opiod addiction

 

Opioid addiction is not an uncommon issue. In fact, in 2019, nearly 50,000 people in the U.S. succumbed to opioid-involved overdoses. It has become a severe national crisis. Opioid misuse is marked by an unhealthy dependence on opioids – including prescription pain medication, heroin, and synthetic opioids like fentanyl – that eventually hinder one’s daily life. Turning to an addiction treatment center can help patients take back control and take active steps towards living a healthy life again. If you know of someone needing to access recovery programs, know that drug and alcohol treatment centers are the best path to recovery. These centers are equipped with healthcare professions ready to help and various resources to live a life free of addiction.

What Are Opioids?

Opioids are chemicals, natural or synthetic, that interact with the opioid receptors on the nerve cells in the body and brain. They aim to help decrease feelings of pain. For this reason, opioids also include prescription pain relievers.  Heroin and synthetic opioids are also included in this category. 

Prescription opioids aim to treat severe pain, usually from an injury or after surgery, chronic pain, cancer treatment during the active phase, palliative care, and even end-of-life care. Patients depend on these opioids to help alleviate their pain and manage their severe conditions.

Of course, there are some side effects to using opioids, such as drowsiness, mental confusion, euphoria, nausea, and constipation. Sometimes, when taken in high doses, weakened respiration is also observed.

Prescription pain relievers include:

  • Oxycodone (OxyContin®) 
  • Hydrocodone (Vicodin®)
  • Codeine
  • Morphine
  • And more

Synthetic opioids include

  • Fentanyl
  • Methadone
  • Pethidine
  • Tramadol
  • Carfentanil

Synthetic opioids are extremely potent. Fentanyl, for example, is more powerful than heroin (by 50 times) and morphine (by 100 times).

 

How Do People Get Addicted to Opioids?

In some cases, people will get addicted to opioids if they begin taking them differently than how they were prescribed. For example, crushing a pill to snort or inject it into their system. This can be life-threatening, as it quickly delivers all the drugs to the body. 

Another way to become addicted to opioids is by taking more than have been prescribed or taking it more often than prescribed by a doctor. Research shows the potential for addiction is high if opioids are used for long-term pain management, and even taking them longer than a week increases the risk of dependence.

Women are at a higher risk of becoming addicted to opioids and this is because they are more likely to have chronic pain. This means they are also more likely to be given higher doses when prescribed opioids, and will often need to use the medication for longer.

Stopping the use of opioids, especially abruptly, causes severe symptoms including pain, chills, cramps, diarrhea, dilated pupils, restlessness, anxiety, nausea, vomiting, insomnia, and very intense cravings. These symptoms of opioid addiction are often the reason behind continued use, as they are so intense it’s easier to avoid them and carry on using the medication. 

Some genetic, psychological, and environmental factors play a role in addiction, such as:

  • Poverty and unemployment
  • A family or personal history of addiction
  • Taking opioids at a young age
  • A history of criminal activity
  • Risk-taking or thrill-seeking behavior
  • A history of severe depression or anxiety
  • Stressful circumstances, and more

drug & alcohol treatment centers

 

What Are Some of The Common Symptoms of Opioid Addiction?

Similar to other substance abuse, the signs and symptoms of opioid addiction are different for each individual, but the baseline is an increased dependency on the substance. The signs can be physical, behavioral, and psychological. Common symptoms of opioid addiction include:

  • Not being able to stop using opioids
  • Using more than the amount prescribed
  • Shallow or slow breathing
  • Being physically agitated
  • Poor decision making
  • Abandonment of responsibilities
  • Mood swings
  • Irritability
  • Depression
  • Lowered motivation
  • Anxiety attacks

Patients may also find taking the drug starts causing trouble in their daily life. These can show up as problems either with their health, responsibilities like school or work, with the law, and with friends and family as those closest begin to notice significant changes in their behavior. 

The reason opioids can be so addictive is due to their high levels of positive reinforcement. As a result, despite the negative results they may have on the patient’s life, often patients will continue using them. The addiction then creates an ongoing cycle that can be difficult to break if the patient is unwilling to change their behavior.

 

What Are the Treatment Options?

As a chronic illness, opioid addiction should be continuously managed and observed. Needless to say, the treatment will be different for each person, with the goal being to stop using and avoid the future use of opioids. 

Unfortunately, stopping will often lead to severe side effects as part of the withdrawal process. The best practice is always to inform a doctor before quitting opioids, as they can help with guidance towards a safe treatment program. A patient can be prescribed medicines to help relieve withdrawal symptoms and control cravings. 

Of course, a patient will also need to address the mental or emotional addiction to opioids. Drug and alcohol treatment centers can help manage a patient’s depression, cravings, and assist them in dealing with damaged relationships. For these reasons, the treatment ranges from outpatient individual treatment or group counseling, inpatient treatment, self-help programs, and cognitive therapy.

How The Rubicon Can Help

At the Rubicon, we have a 3-day outpatient approach  substance abuse treatment that will help you start your recovery, and it includes:

  1. Awareness: How has substance abuse affected your life and the life of those around you?​ How has addiction impacted your personal and relationship values?​ And, how have your addictive patterns of behavior impacted your life?
  2. Action Planning: A plan to maintain your recovery on a long-term basis. A plan to establish and maintain a supportive network of relationships throughout your recovery. And, a plan to establish and maintain ongoing activities to avoid a relapse.
  3. Wellness: This phase addresses a plan to establish and maintain your physical and emotional well-being throughout recovery.

As a team of trained professionals, we offer a highly personalized, collaborative approach to substance abuse treatment. We are committed to addiction treatment and provide caring and compassion in an outpatient clinic setting.  

When you are ready to seek outpatient addiction treatment, reach out to The Rubicon. Feel free to call us at (612) 200-9870 or email our team at theteam@therubicon.org or go to our website.

alcohol addiction treatment center

The Benefits of an Alcohol Addiction Treatment Center

alcohol addiction treatment center

Alcohol addiction is not an uncommon issue and it is characterized by an unhealthy dependence on alcohol that interferes with one’s daily functioning. Fortunately, should you or someone you know be facing a problem with alcohol abuse, alcohol treatment centers are within reach and offer an opportunity to access recovery and various resources to living a life free of addiction.

 

What Is Alcohol Addiction?

 

Simply put, alcohol addiction, alcoholism, or alcohol use disorder (AUD) is the desire for alcohol and the incapability to stop drinking regardless of the damaging effects on a person’s health and life.

According to the American Psychiatric Association (APA), alcohol addiction is considered a mental health disorder where alcohol causes lasting changes in the brain’s functioning, creating a dependency on alcohol. It is a progressive disorder, meaning its impact on an individual’s health and life worsens with prolonged use. This is why recognizing it as a problem and getting treated as soon as possible is key to overcoming alcoholism.

The prevailing risk factors for developing an alcohol addiction include: 

 

  • Binge and heavy drinking
  • Drinking before the age of 15
  • Having a family history of alcohol issues
  • Co-occurring mental health conditions
  • A history of traumatic experiences

 

What Are The Signs?

 

Symptoms of alcohol abuse can vary from mild to extreme and often are very different for each individual. Additionally, alcohol abuse negatively impacts individuals and their mental, physical, and social health. The following general, physical, psychological, and social signs are indicative of a developing or existing alcohol abuse problem:

 

General signs:

  • Regularly drinking more than planned
  • Failed attempts at stopping bad drinking behavior
  • Finding that you need to drink more in order to feel a buzz
  • Feelings of withdrawal when not drinking and constantly craving a drink of alcohol
  • Continuing drinking habits even though you know it’s negatively impacting your health

 

Physical signs:

  • Drinking more than usual
  • Spending more time and money on alcohol use
  • Taking more time to recover from the effects of alcohol
  • Showing signs of intoxication, for example, garbled speech or poor coordination
  • Decline in self-care and hygiene
  • Smelling of alcohol
  • Substantial weight changes

More prolonged use of alcohol will result in signs such as:

  • Cardiac problems
  • Liver issues
  • Pancreatitis
  • Various cancers
  • A vulnerable immune system

Psychological signs

  • Quick mood changes
  • An increase in irritability, anger, and aggression
  • Lack of responsibility
  • A heightening of anxiety
  • Delusional thinking or even hallucinations during times of withdrawal

It’s also worth noting that these psychological signs can often mask other mental health conditions or amplify current disorders.

Social signs

  • Spending more time alone or in new and changing social groups
  • An increase in dishonesty
  • Not following through with plans
  • Growing conflicts with those around you
  • Declining performance in work, school, or sport

Usually, people struggling with alcohol addiction are often inconsistent and unpredictable in their social exchanges.

outpatient addiction treatment

How Alcohol Addiction Affects Everyday Life

Unfortunately, when someone is suffering from alcohol use disorder, it becomes the main focus of their life. They start to spend more time and money on buying and drinking alcohol. Sadly, this means they have less time to devote to doing the things they used to love. 

Family, hobbies, and work eventually take a back seat to alcoholism. Lying can become a habit. Money earmarked for household necessities will often be used on alcohol instead. These behaviors usually lead to conflict within the family. Keeping a regular schedule becomes more difficult for those suffering from AUD as recovery from being drunk or hungover takes more time. Among others, being intoxicated can also lead to an increased risk of injury to oneself or harming other people.

How Can A Treatment Program Help?

Not all hope is lost. Those living with alcohol addiction can find the road to health through professional help at an alcohol addiction treatment center. These treatment centers are specifically designated for people facing similar problems. Here, individuals can find a sense of community as they take steps towards recovery. Long-term recovery is attainable with a personal addiction treatment plan. 

The American Psychiatric Association has put together standards for measuring whether or not one can benefit from a treatment program. And if you meet the criteria for needing a treatment program for alcohol use disorder, you should consider contacting an alcohol addiction treatment center for help. At The Rubicon, we offer individualized care for those struggling with addiction. The first stage to expect at an alcohol addiction treatment center is the withdrawal process. Everyone will experience this differently, but it often includes insomnia, fever, anxiety, vomiting, headaches, and more. These symptoms shouldn’t last more than 48 hours. After this stage, you’ll resume inpatient or outpatient addiction treatment. These rehabilitation programs aim to help you work through the root cause of your addiction in a safe space. The final stage is the encouragement to partake in outpatient addiction treatment in the form of support group programs that help reduce your chance of relapsing.

 

What Do I Need to Know to Get Started?

If you’re not sure if you need treatment, take The Rubicon’s self-assessment to determine if our program would be helpful to you.

 

How The Rubicon Can Help

At the Rubicon, we have a 3-day outpatient approach drug abuse treatment that will help you start your recovery, and it includes:

  1. Awareness: How has substance abuse affected your life and the life of those around you?​ How has addiction impacted your personal and relationship values?​ And, how have your addictive patterns of behavior impacted your life?
  2. Action Planning: A plan to maintain your recovery on a long-term basis. A plan to establish and maintain a supportive network of relationships throughout your recovery. And, a plan to establish and maintain ongoing activities to avoid a relapse.
  3. Wellness: This phase addresses a plan to establish and maintain your physical and emotional well-being throughout recovery.

As a team of trained professionals, we offer a highly personalized, collaborative approach to substance abuse treatment. We are committed to addiction treatment and provide caring and compassion in an outpatient clinic setting.  

When you are ready to seek outpatient addiction treatment, reach out to The Rubicon. Feel free to call us at (612) 200-9870 or email our team at theteam@therubicon.org or go to our website.

 

Are you ready to cross your Rubicon?

 

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