clients dealing with opioid withdrawal symptoms in group therapy

Opioid Withdrawal Timeline: Effects, Withdrawal, Detox Process

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When someone uses opioids long-term or abuses them, and abruptly stops, they may experience some pretty uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms. The opioid withdrawal timeline consists of feelings of discomfort as well as concerning conditions that could lead to health issues. Being medically monitored as an individual undergoes this process can help them not only to safely go through it but also be as comfortable as possible. 

Opioid withdrawal can be an intense process. Undergoing opioid withdrawal through the cold turkey method, or alone, can lead to uncomfortable symptoms and potential relapse. Once someone stops using opioids for a period of time and begins using them again, they could experience an overdose. Being able to professionally address the causes of addiction to opioids can help with the healing process. 

Opioid Withdrawal

What is opioid withdrawal? When someone uses opioids for any length of time, the body can become accustomed to these substances, and eventually, dependence can occur. When dependence occurs, it can be extremely difficult to stop using them.

Whether it be illicit drugs like heroin and fentanyl, or a prescription drug like oxycodone, the body can grow dependent upon these drugs and then when they are abruptly stopped, some uncomfortable and unpleasant feelings could arise. 

Symptoms of opioid withdrawal can include:

  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea
  • Heart rate changes
  • Blood pressure changes
  • Insomnia
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Increased body temperature
  • Muscle and bone pain and cramping
  • Vomiting
  • Chills and sweats

These symptoms can be extremely uncomfortable and often lead those trying to end opioid use to relapse. Knowing what is within the opioid withdrawal timeline can help someone to decide that it is not only time to stop using them, but also to seek the available professional help. 

Opioid Withdrawal Process and Timeline

What is the opioid withdrawal timeline? The process of opioid withdrawal can be different for any individual who is going through it. Some people may experience symptoms that others don’t and some may experience more intense symptoms than others. There are different factors that go into what and how someone will experience the withdrawal process. Age, length of use, amount and method of use, and overall well-being are some factors. 

Typically, withdrawal symptoms can begin 6-12 hours after the last use of opioids. This may begin with a runny nose or a feeling of overall discomfort. Within 1-3 days, these symptoms will peak, meaning the discomfort will be high, and more severe symptoms can arise. Within 5-7 days, these symptoms should begin to dissipate.

However, during and even after those first seven days of withdrawal, there could be cravings that begin to arise. These cravings generally are intense, and the mental desire to use the drugs can be so overwhelming, people often go back to using the opioids not only to alleviate the symptoms of withdrawal but also to end the mental desire to use them.

Opioid Detox Process

How does detox work when going through the opioid withdrawal timeline? Well, detox is the process of ridding the body of chemicals and dependency. Medically, it can be an intense process and cause severe strain on an individual’s body. When undergoing the detox process, it can be managed and monitored in a professional setting where medical professionals can ensure that it is as comfortable as possible. They can also help with potentially dangerous symptoms that may arise for an individual undergoing opioid withdrawal.

How long does detox last? Well, there are different factors that go into this. Some people may go through it a little quicker than others, there is no set time frame. However, typically detox could be 7-10 days, and it is the beginning of the healing process. Once the substances have been removed from the system, an individual can then begin to fully grasp and understand that these substances are harmful and can lead to some severe impacts on their life as well as those who love them.

How Professional Treatment is Best

Professional treatment can help with the opioid withdrawal timeline symptoms. Medical professionals can administer medications to help alleviate the symptoms of an individual who is going through this process. There are also mental health symptoms that can arise, such as anxiety and depression, that can be addressed as they occur.

Safety is the main priority when someone decides to stop using opioids, and professional treatment provides a safe, and healing environment where someone could go through the detox process and begin healing from any traumas or other issues that led them to use opioids and addiction. If someone is struggling, reaching out and getting professional help can lead them to a life they deserve to live. 

End Opioid Addiction Now

Opioid addiction can lead to fatal consequences. Brain damage, legal consequences, loss of family and friends, and loss of jobs are all things that can occur as a result of addiction to opioids. Recovery from addiction to opioids is possible and there are professionals who can help. Ocean hills can provide a safe and comfortable environment to recover in.

If you or a loved one are struggling with opioid addiction, call us and begin the next chapter of life.

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