Nearly three million Americans struggle with opiate addiction. While overcoming this addiction is challenging, the right support and care can make recovery possible. Opiate withdrawal is a necessary part of the recovery process. Knowing what to expect during the withdrawal process can make recovery seem less overwhelming.
Why Opiate Withdrawal Happens
An opiate detox should be the first to on you or your loved one’s path to addiction recovery. Once individuals stop consuming opiates, the body will begin to go into withdrawal.
While the severity of withdrawal symptoms will vary, at a minimum they’ll be uncomfortable. However, they’re a necessary part of the recovery process. During withdrawal, the body and the brain will naturally get rid of all opiates in the system.
There are two important things to note about the necessity of withdrawal. First, the withdrawal itself has to happen. You can’t overcome addiction until your system is detoxified. Second, going through withdrawal under professional medical supervision is key. Medical staff will be able to monitor your condition and act accordingly if complications arise.
How Long Does Opiate Withdrawal Last?
The exact duration of an opiate withdrawal depends largely on the individual. The average daily dose, the length of the addiction, and the client’s overall health can all play a role. In general, however, the process will last six to seven days.
Withdrawal symptoms may begin to appear within 10 hours of the last dose. Clients who take long-acting prescription opioids, on the other hand, may see withdrawal symptoms around 20–24 hours into the detox.
The first withdrawal symptoms can be mild, but they will intensify over time. Symptoms tend to peak around 72 hours into the detox. Symptoms then taper off until they disappear two or three days later.
Opiate Withdrawal Symptoms
Since opiates are so powerful, withdrawal can bring about a number of unpleasant side effects. These withdrawal symptoms can sometimes be mild and may be comparable to the flu. In other cases, they can be severe.
Some of the most common physical opiate withdrawal symptoms include nausea and muscle cramping. Stopping consumption can also lead to dehydration, diarrhea, and abdominal discomfort. Some withdrawal symptoms like depression and anxiety are more psychological in nature.
Fortunately, experienced medical staff can monitor all of these symptoms in a professional addiction treatment setting. In a medically supervised detox, clients will be more comfortable and safer than they would be if they attempted self-detox.
What Happens After Withdrawal Ends
Withdrawal is key to overcoming an opiate addiction. Once withdrawal is over, however, patients will need to continue with addiction treatment. At Ashley Addiction Treatment, patients can participate in a number of substance abuse programs designed to combat addiction. A few treatment methods to expect in detox and rehab include:
- Dual diagnosis treatment
- Trauma therapy
- Group counseling
- Relapse prevention training
- Holistic approaches to healing and recovery
Understanding opiate withdrawal can help you decide to take the next step. At Ashley Addiction Treatment in Havre de Grace, Maryland, you can begin the path to a drug-free life. Call 866-313-6307 to overcome addiction and start living your life today.