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Fighting prescription drug abuse– 3: Effective medications for opioid detox

Fighting prescription drug abuse– 3: Effective medications for opioid detox

Addiction to opioids can develop in any individual, including those who have been using the drugs as prescribed or for medicinal purposes only. This kind of dependence develops in individuals who use the drugs either too often or for a long period of time. Continuing to use opioids for a longer duration can cause chemical changes in the brain. This, in turn, affects the brain circuits responsible for an individual’s mood and behavior.

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), there are between 26.4 million and 36 million people worldwide who abuse opiates. These drugs include prescription pain relievers and, the illegal drug, heroin.

Addiction can happen quickly and once full-blown, can make it difficult for a person to detox and return back to his/her normal life. The sooner a person seeks help, the more successful the outcome can be. Support from friends and family members is crucial, during and following the treatment as well.

Dealing with withdrawal symptoms can be tough. It is also one of the major reasons people relapse and start abusing drugs again.

The series “Opioid Detox,” helps explain aspects of the process. Following is a list of medications that can effectively treat the symptoms of opioid detox:

1. Methadone

This long-acting opioid drug is an effective medication that can prevent opioid withdrawal symptoms. Methadone activates the opioid receptors that are similar to those activated by other narcotics, which, in turn, eases the drug craving. However, this drug does not cause a euphoric effect and is an effective way to prevent any form of physical dependence.

2. Buprenorphine

Buprenorphine can be used alone (Subutex) as well as in combination with naloxone (Suboxone) to fight opioid withdrawal symptoms. When ingested, this drug activates the opioid receptors, which helps in reducing the craving for drugs as well as prevents any kind of withdrawal symptoms.

Using Subutex is advisable for acute opiate detoxification and Suboxone can be used either for acute detoxification or as preventive maintenance against opiate relapse.

3. Naltrexone

It is an effective drug that can be used to reverse the effects of opioids and alcohol on the body. The drug can help an individual manage his/her dependence on opioids as well as prevent relapse. Available in the form of pills or as an injection, the medication works effectively to reduce the craving for opiates.

Recovery roadmap

An individual needs willpower and the desire to become sober to break free from opioid dependence. Taking the right kind of medications and undergoing counseling can help a person to recover faster and better. However, the process takes time and determination.

Seeking help from a medical professional can help a person reduce the chance of relapse as well as improve overall health. If you or someone you love is addicted to opioids or any other prescription drug, the Colorado Detox Helpline can help you in finding the best detox treatment centers in Colorado. You may contact us at our 24/7 detox helpline number 866-730-5807 or chat online with one of our representatives who can assist you with complete details about drug detox treatment centers in Colorado.

To read other articles in the series “Fighting prescription drug abuse:”

Part 1: Opioid detox, first step to recovery

Part 2: Effects of opioid detox

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