Beginning the Recovery Process for Fentanyl
Opioid addiction has become a public health crisis in the United States, with fentanyl abuse being a leading driver in this epidemic. Like other opioids, prescription fentanyl can be used to treat severe pain, particularly for cancer patients who have proved resistant to other opioid medications.
However, this synthetic opioid pain reliever can also have incredibly harmful consequences, up to and including overdose, especially with continued use. For many people, taking opioid medications can cause them to develop a physical dependence on these substances over time.
Unfortunately, California is no exception to the spread of fentanyl use and addiction. If you use this or other synthetic opioids to manage pain, it is important to know how this drug can affect you and how you can begin your fentanyl recovery process.
Keep reading to learn more about the dangerous consequences of fentanyl abuse, and how South Shores Recovery can help you safely and successfully overcome an opioid use disorder.
The Spread of Fentanyl and Opioid Abuse
Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that is up to 100 times more potent than morphine. Due to its strength, fentanyl misuse is extremely dangerous. It is often mixed with other drugs, such as heroin, without the user’s knowledge, which can lead to overdose and death.
There are a number of factors that have contributed to the spread of fentanyl and opioid abuse, including the availability of prescription opioids, the economic downturn, and the rise of social media.
Prescription opioids were initially prescribed to treat pain, but they have become increasingly easy to obtain. This is due in part to the fact that doctors are more likely to prescribe opioids for chronic pain relief than they were in the past.
The pharmaceutical industry has also aggressively marketed prescription forms of fentanyl and other opioids, including nasal sprays and fentanyl patch products, despite their dangerous side effects.
Another contributing factor to the increased popularity of opioid drugs is the economic downturn. Many people who lost their jobs during the recession turned to drugs, including opioids, to cope with their pain and stress.
A Surge of Overdose Deaths Due Largely to Fentanyl Drug Use
As a synthetic drug, illicitly-manufactured fentanyl is not hard to come by, and is often distributed to customers unknowingly when purchasing other substances. In these cases, even if their drug abuse did not start with fentanyl, it can quickly end with it.
The spread of fentanyl and opioid abuse has had a devastating impact on communities across the United States. In 2020, there were over 91,000 drug overdose deaths in the United States, and the majority of these deaths involved opioids.
In light of the lives lost to this complex disease, it has become more important than ever to increase the availability of addiction treatment options and prevention services throughout the country.
What are the Causes of Fentanyl Addiction?
In addition to its intense strength and pain-relieving properties, there are several other causing factors of fentanyl addiction. Knowing what factors can contribute to a person’s risk of developing a dependence on this substance can help you keep yourself and your loved ones safe.
The potency of fentanyl is a particularly strong factor in its ability to become habit-forming. Even just one fake counterfeit Percocet pill can be enough to cause intense side effects. In many cases, a single dose can even be strong enough to cause a life-threatening overdose. Unfortunately, this also means that one-time of using the drug can get the user hooked.
As discussed, the availability of fentanyl is also an issue. Because it is often found in illegal drugs, such as heroin and cocaine, this makes it easy for people to get their hands on the drug, even if they have never used it before.
Perhaps the most important thing to keep in mind, however, is that its euphoric properties can make it a particularly appealing drug for those who are struggling with underlying mental health conditions and other chronic diseases. This is because the drug can temporarily relieve the symptoms of their mental illness, making them want to continue using it.
What are Common Fentanyl Side Effects?
Fentanyl can have several side effects other than just relieving physical pain. In many cases, these negative consequences can be life-threatening if left unaddressed. Whether you are taking this medication for medical reasons or recreationally, it is important to be aware of how it can affect you in both the short and long-term.
Short-Term Side Effects of Synthetic Opioids
In addition to its pain-relieving and euphoric properties, fentanyl can also have several uncomfortable side effects in the short term. Some of the most commonly reported symptoms after using fentanyl include:
- Urinary retention
Long-Term Side Effects of an Opioid Use Disorder
If someone has been using fentanyl for a long time, it is likely that they have developed a drug addiction, as it is rarely prescribed to be used over an extended period due to its high risk for adverse side effects and dependence.
Chronic abuse of this substance can lead to several negative consequences, including:
- Brain damage
- Sleeping problems
- Chronic constipation
- Tooth decay
Recognizing Fentanyl Overdose Symptoms
In addition to these health effects, fentanyl is also well-known for its high risk of overdose even with small doses. This condition can quickly become life-threatening and will require emergency medical assistance to be properly treated.
Signs and symptoms of Fentanyl overdose include:
- Slowed breathing
- Loss of consciousness
- Cold and clammy skin
- Gray or blue-tinged skin
- Choking or gagging sounds
Understanding How Fentanyl Addiction Happens
Fentanyl is a highly addictive synthetic opioid that is often abused. If you are concerned that someone you know may be addicted to this drug, there are some signs of fentanyl abuse that you can look out for:
- People who are addicted to fentanyl may start to withdraw from social activities and previously enjoyable hobbies or become more irritable or aggressive. They may also isolate themselves from family members and friends, and start to lie or steal to get money to buy fentanyl.
- Those who are addicted to fentanyl may lose weight, have pale skin, and be generally lethargic. They may also have track marks on their arms or legs if they inject the drug, or wear baggy and high-coverage clothing to hide these marks.
- People who are addicted to fentanyl may experience mood swings, difficulty concentrating, and memory problems. They may also have hallucinations or delusions.
- When someone who is addicted to fentanyl stops using the drug, they may experience withdrawal symptoms, which can be highly uncomfortable and even life-threatening.
If you are concerned that someone you know may be addicted to fentanyl, it is important to talk to them about it. You can also offer to help them find treatment. There are many resources available to help people who are struggling with addiction, and there is no shame in seeking help.
Overcoming Fentanyl Withdrawal Symptoms with Support
Opioid withdrawal can be an intensely uncomfortable and potentially fatal process, which is why many people are encouraged to seek treatment when looking to stop using this drug. Fentanyl works by interacting with opioid receptors in the brain, relieving pain and simultaneously producing feelings of euphoria.
As the brain becomes used to this interaction, a dependence forms. When an addicted individual suddenly stops taking fentanyl, this can cause the body to go into shock, causing side effects that can be fatal if not properly treated.
Some of the most commonly experienced fentanyl withdrawal symptoms include:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Cold flashes
- Muscle aches
- Severe cravings
Fentanyl Addiction Treatment Services
The best type of treatment for you will depend on your individual needs and circumstances. If you are struggling with fentanyl addiction, please reach out for help. There are many resources available to you, and you don’t have to go through this alone.
Medical Detox at South Shores
Because of how dangerous the fentanyl withdrawal timeline and process can be, most people will start their treatment process with a detox program. When recovering at a detox facility, you can be safely weaned off of fentanyl while under constant medical supervision.
This process often involves nutritional counseling, well as medication-assisted treatment (MAT). MAT involves using medications to help manage withdrawal symptoms and drug cravings, lowering the risk of relapse during the early stages of recovery.
Of course, getting your physical health back to normal is not the only important aspect of the recovery journey. In order to stay sober, many people will need to seek further care that can attend to their emotional needs, as well.
Inpatient vs Outpatient Treatment
Inpatient and residential treatment services are typically the most commonly recommended when recovering from an opioid use disorder. This is a 24/7 treatment program that typically lasts for 30-90 days. It is a good option for people who need more intensive treatment or who have a co-occurring mental health disorder.
Outpatient treatment, on the other hand, is less intensive and usually more flexible than inpatient care. It typically includes individual and group counseling sessions, as well as addiction education and prevention services.
Intensive outpatient treatment (IOP)and partial hospitalization programs (PHP) can be a good combination of these services. These offer more intensive care that typically involves several hours of therapy per day.
Dual Diagnosis Treatment Options
Dual diagnosis treatment is a type of addiction treatment that addresses both the substance use disorder and the underlying mental health condition. This is important because many people who struggle with fentanyl addiction also have a mental health condition, such as depression or anxiety.
The mental health condition can often contribute to addiction, and treating both conditions together is essential for long-term recovery. Dual diagnosis treatment for fentanyl addiction can help people address both the addiction and the underlying mental health condition, improving their chances of long-term recovery.
There are many services provided in a dual diagnosis rehab setting, including individual, group, and family therapy, behavioral therapies, and holistic treatment modalities. Each of these can help address the underlying causes of your substance abuse and help you build better-coping mechanisms for maintaining a healthy, sober lifestyle.
Finding the Right Fentanyl Recovery Program
Knowing how to pick the right treatment program for your recovery needs can be difficult. Fortunately, there are ways of knowing what kind of facilities are the best option for you. For starters, it is important to find a treatment program that offers comprehensive care.
Addiction is a complex disease, and as such each person requires a complex recovery approach to be properly treated. A dedicated staff, as well as licenses and accreditations, can also help prove that a facility offers high-quality care to its clients.
At South Shores Recovery, we can offer our clients all of this and more, providing them the best opportunity to comfortably achieve long-term sobriety.
The Programs of Support at South Shores Recovery
South Shores Recovery is a drug and alcohol rehab center located in Orange County, California. We offer a variety of treatment programs, including detox, inpatient, and outpatient care. Our facility also offers a number of holistic therapies, such as yoga, music therapy, and surf therapy.
Our center’s mission is to provide the highest level of comprehensive treatment in a safe and therapeutic environment. We believe that recovery is a journey, not a destination and that our clients need to be equipped with the tools they need to maintain sobriety long-term.
South Shores Recovery is accredited by the Joint Commission (JCAHO) as well as the California Department of Healthcare Services (DHCS) and seeks to continually improve our offerings for clients.
If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, South Shores Recovery may be a good option for you. We offer a variety of treatment programs and services that can help you or your loved one on the road to recovery.
How Much Does Starting Fentanyl Recovery Cost?
There are many ways to pay for rehab, depending on your individual circumstances. Some of the most common options that are accepted at our treatment facility include:
- Private insurance: If you have private health insurance, it may cover some or all of the costs of rehab. However, the amount of coverage will vary depending on your specific plan.
- Medicaid: Medicaid is a government-funded health insurance program for low-income individuals and families. It may cover some or all of the costs of rehab, depending on your income and assets.
- Medicare: Medicare is a government-funded health insurance program for people over the age of 65 and certain younger people with disabilities. It may cover some or all of the costs of rehab, depending on your eligibility.
- Sliding scale: We offer our clients a sliding scale payment option, which means that the cost of treatment is based on your income. This can be a good option if you have limited financial resources.
- Self-pay: If you do not have insurance or are not eligible for government assistance, you may be able to pay for rehab out of pocket. This can be a costly option, but it may be the only way to get the treatment you need.
There are also a number of financial assistance programs available to help people pay for rehab. These programs can provide grants, loans, or other forms of financial assistance. A South Shores Recovery representative can help you understand all of your payment options.
Start Your Recovery from Fentanyl at South Shores Today!
If you or a loved one is struggling with opioid addiction, it is never too late to start your fentanyl recovery process. If you are ready to start your journey to sobriety, South Shores Recovery is here to help.
Our program offers the comprehensive and effective treatment you need to make a successful recovery from your fentanyl addiction, in the secure and restorative environment you deserve. The only person who can make the decision to start living a better life is you.
Reach out to our compassionate Admissions team for a confidential consultation and to start your recovery process today!
Frequently Asked Questions on Fentanyl Recovery
Can I Stop Using Fentanyl By Myself?
It is not safe to stop using fentanyl by yourself. Fentanyl is a highly addictive drug, and withdrawal from it can be very unpleasant and even dangerous. In some cases, withdrawal from fentanyl can lead to seizures, heart problems, or even death. For this reason, it is strongly recommended that you seek medical help if you are trying to stop using fentanyl.
What is the Recovery Time for Fentanyl Addiction?
The recovery time for fentanyl addiction varies depending on the individual’s circumstances and the severity of the addiction. It is important to note that recovery from fentanyl addiction is a lifelong process.
There is no one-size-fits-all answer to the question of how long it takes to recover, and everyone’s journey will be different. However, with the right support and treatment, it is possible to overcome addiction and live a healthy, substance-free life.