Fentanyl is a powerful synthetic opioid originally created by pharmaceutical companies for pain management. When prescribed by doctors, it can be used to treat severe pain that doesn’t respond well to mild painkillers, including pain from cancer treatment. Despite having legitimate medical qualities, fentanyl is also a highly addictive substance prone to drug abuse and it’s not easy to get off of fentanyl.
Because fentanyl addiction is so widespread, long-term use is not recommended. The drug is 50 to 100 times more potent than morphine. Unregulated fentanyl is usually added to other street drugs, such as heroin, to increase potency. A significant amount of illicit fentanyl is circulating through the United States, which has led to many suffering a fatal overdose or substance abuse problems.
Fentanyl addiction is hard to beat because there are many uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms associated with it. If you or someone you know starts to experience fentanyl withdrawal symptoms when trying to quit, there are ways to make the process more comfortable and get off of fentanyl for good.
What Does Fentanyl Addiction Look Like?
As part of the class of drugs known as synthetic opioids, fentanyl works by triggering the release of chemicals in your brain called endorphins. Also known as feel-good chemicals, endorphins induce a pleasurable sensation, such as a high or feeling of euphoria. Doctors will usually prescribe opioids for severe pain management because the endorphins they produce are good at muting pain. However, improper use of these drugs can lead to an opioid use disorder.
Once the intense state of well-being or euphoria that opioids create fades, the desire to keep reproducing that feeling will increase. This can cause an individual to seek out more drugs, kicking off a cycle of opioid addiction that becomes harder to break. Warning signs of a fentanyl addiction include:
- Memory loss
- Difficulty concentrating
- Intense cravings
- Poor judgment
- Trouble paying attention
Becoming addicted to fentanyl or other substances leads to dependency, and the drive to keep reaching that intense euphoria becomes overpowering. A significant danger of fentanyl abuse is increasing the dosage to continue getting the desired effects. As your body gets used to the drug, it requires more to achieve the strong feeling of euphoria. Large doses of any substance can lead to accidental overdose deaths, which is why it’s imperative to seek medical treatment for an opioid addiction.
Fentanyl Withdrawal Symptoms
Individuals with a fentanyl addiction will most likely experience withdrawal symptoms if they stop taking the drug. The fentanyl withdrawal timeline is quick, with symptoms occurring as soon as 12 to 30 hours after the last dosage. Negative bodily reactions can occur, including:
- Intense fentanyl cravings
- Nausea or vomiting
- Muscle or bone pain
- Runny nose
- Hypertension (high blood pressure)
- Yawning, restless sleep or insomnia
- Stomach cramps
- Increased body temperature
- Chills or sweating
- Irritability and anxiety
While not life-threatening, fentanyl withdrawal symptoms can last for several days and be extremely uncomfortable. The severity of symptoms depends on how long the drug abuse lasted, how much was taken and how often. It’s possible you may feel slightly off for several weeks after kicking a substance use disorder, but your body will eventually adjust, causing you to feel better physically.
However, the psychological effects of drug abuse may still linger, including any underlying mental health disorders that may have led to drug use in the first place. Combating withdrawal symptoms is already difficult enough without other health problems, which is why seeking addiction treatment for fentanyl use can help make symptoms more bearable. Take a look at these treatment tips that can help you stay away from opioids for good.
How to Get Off Of Fentanyl for Good
At Ranch Creek Recovery, we understand that patients need to have access to a variety of treatments. Fentanyl addiction treatment will look different for each individual, depending on the severity of their addiction and where they’re at in recovery. We offer highly personalized fentanyl rehab treatment options that cover mild to severe symptoms for those living in California who need some extra help getting back on their feet.
The first step in the fentanyl addiction treatment process is to eliminate the drug or other opioids from your body. In many cases, people are afraid to stop taking the drug because they don’t want to experience opioid withdrawal symptoms. At our facility, a professional treatment provider monitors you during detox for serious symptoms and prescribes necessary medications to make you more comfortable throughout the withdrawal process.
If needed, a medical provider can also be assigned for individuals who require further clinical care to help them overcome serious side effects. Our subacute detox services are ideal for individuals at any stage of the addiction process, even if you’ve previously completed an intensive detox program.
You’ll also have access to a clinical professional for individual therapy sessions to cope with any mental health issues or emotional symptoms that arise during the fentanyl withdrawal process.
Holistic Addiction Treatment
While traditional and medical approaches are effective for treating addiction, our treatment center tailors services to the unique needs of each of our patients. Whether you’re suffering from post-acute withdrawal symptoms or recovering from a fentanyl overdose, our holistic addiction treatment can help you get to the root cause of a substance abuse disorder in the mind, body and spirit.
Experiential therapy is at the core of our holistic approach to rehab. We offer various activities for our patients that help them improve physical fitness, develop self-acceptance and awareness and grow as individuals to move past their addictions.
Equine therapy provides a calming experience for our patients while undergoing fentanyl withdrawal treatment. As a type of animal-assisted therapy, our well-trained animals help comfort our patients and establish a safe environment beneficial for coping with anxiety disorders or addiction. Horses can sense how you’re feeling and respond appropriately, allowing you to form a unique connection compared to individual therapy or support groups.
Physical fitness benefits individuals on both a physical and a mental level. Fentanyl abuse takes a toll on the body. To help you manage pain from addiction and move past it, our nutritional and exercise programs provide you with the stamina needed to set and achieve bodily goals.
Amino Acid Therapy
Amino acid therapy addresses the imbalance caused by fentanyl use during the withdrawal process. It works by supplementing serotonin and other amino acids that are usually depleted by drug use. We provide individuals with a supplement between meals to help their brains get back on track.
As the most popular form of experiential therapy, yoga uses exercises that incorporate meditation and body awareness. For those previously physically dependent on fentanyl, yoga offers physical and mental health benefits such as managing chronic pain, improving cardiovascular endurance and clearing the mind to concentrate on what truly matters.
Inpatient Drug Rehab
As part of our holistic approach to treatment, we offer a residential treatment program for those who need extra care to end their addictions. A dedicated team of health care professionals conducts assessments to determine the severity of your substance use disorder and what mental health issues, if any, are co-occurring with the addiction. Our specialists then work with you to develop and implement an individualized treatment plan that can include both talk therapy and medication assisted treatment, where you’ll receive replacement drugs that address physical fentanyl cravings.
Our treatment services use either cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) or dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) to help you confront the root cause of addiction, including trauma or family issues. Throughout your 30-day, 60-day or 90-day stay, we’ll help you develop coping mechanisms using a variety of holistic treatment methods that enable you to achieve a healthier lifestyle.
Once individuals complete residential treatment or if they can’t commit to full-time inpatient rehab, our outpatient drug rehab program is here to help with substance use disorders without putting life on hold. Our 12-step program uses our holistic approach to treatment along with CBT and DBT techniques to develop strategies geared toward relapse prevention.
Outpatient rehab is usually a cheaper option than residential treatment and gives individuals the flexibility of keeping their job and staying in touch with family while receiving the help they need. Whether you’re looking to undergo therapy, medication assisted treatment or any one of our holistic treatment methods, outpatient rehab will give you access to the necessary resources to beat your fentanyl addiction.
Seek Help to End Your Fentanyl Addiction for Good
If you or a loved one is struggling with a fentanyl addiction, Ranch Creek Recovery has trained specialists who can help manage withdrawal symptoms without turning to further opioid use. By contacting us today at (877) 997-8931 or verifying your insurance covers treatment, a member of our compassionate team will guide you through the treatment options to find the one that best fits your needs. Don’t wait until the addiction gets worse. Take your first steps toward recovery today and gain the tools needed to lead a more fulfilling life.