Opiates are natural and synthetic narcotic opioid alkaloids found in prescription or recreation drugs. Morphine, codeine, OxyContin, dilaudid, methadone and heroin are a few of the most common opiates used. Withdrawal symptoms can include vomiting, diarrhea, sweating and dilated pupils. Heroin withdrawal starts 12 hours after last use, and methadone users feel symptoms 30 hours after their last exposure. Find out what you can use to get through both physical and mental withdrawal symptoms.
Home Remedies and Holistic Care
Expect to feel like you’ve contracted stomach flu for at least a week. Decide whether you want to quit the drug quickly or taper off. Those withdrawing from prescription opiates may start to feel the pain that the narcotics were used to treat. Purchase anti-diarrhea, anti-nausea and muscle-ache medication. Go the holistic route by taking passionflower, ginger and valerian root. A study by the Roozbeh Psychiatric Hospital, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, found that 60 drops of passionflower extract can reduce the symptoms of opiate withdrawal. In addition, the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Faculty of Medicine, Thammasat University, Thailand, conducted a study that showed that ginger can help with nausea and vomiting. Valerian root can promote sleep and relieve discomfort.
Buprenorphine is a prescribed drug that can alleviate opiate-withdraw symptoms, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, www.buprenorphine.samhsa.gov. This opioid partial agonist produces euphoria effects similar to those of opiates, which makes the withdrawal easier for those getting off illegal drugs or methadone. Induction to the medication is usually done in a doctor’s office. Either Suboxone or Subutex is given to the patient the first day. The drug is then administered at home through a tablet or patch. The patient’s opiate addiction will decide daily dosage, yet the range is usually 8 to 16 mg a day. Once the patient stops showing physical and emotional signs of addiction, the dosage is adjusted. The severity of the addiction to opiates determines how long the patient will be on the drug. Buprenorphine has a high rate of abuse by those getting off opiates. Contact your doctor if you begin to feel addicted to this medication.
Rapid Opiate Detox
Treatment programs are available for those who want rapid opiate detox. These programs put the patient under anesthesia typically for four to five hours and inject opiate-blocking drugs. Because the procedure is done while the patient is under, it is believed that the pain and discomfort associated with withdrawal from opiates are avoided. Many of these programs claim that once the patient wakes up they are over their physical addiction. The National Institutes of Health, www.nlm.nih.gov, reports that this type of procedure many not help an individual reduce withdrawal time. In addition, there have been some deaths when this type of procedure has been done outside of a hospital.