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How To Treat Opioid Dependence

How To Treat Opioid Dependence

Given the dramatically negative impacts that opioid addiction has on users and their loved ones, it is important that you seek to remove this addiction from your life as quickly as possible. Whether a patient has fallen into opioid dependence from the prolonged use or abuse of prescription medication or through the ingestion of illegal narcotics, the process of weaning these substances out of your life is the same.

However, this is easier said than done. Opiates are some of the most strongly addictive substances in the world and ridding them from your life takes time, dedication, perseverance, as well as the trained support of professional drug rehab services in Toronto. While the propensity to relapse is strong with opiate dependence, there are effective ways of treating this condition that will allow you to kick the habit for good.

Let’s look at some of the best ways to treat opioid dependence so that you can break the cycle of addiction and work towards restoring your health:

Young man sitting on stairs, suffering from opioid dependence

Know What Opioid Dependence Looks Like

To know whether you or someone you care about is suffering from opioid dependence, it is important to be able to spot the symptoms of this condition. If you are trying to assess whether you are dependent on opioids, take an honest look at your use of these substances and determine if you regularly take more opioids than you intend to. Perhaps you have increased your usage over time and have been unable to decrease the amount of these substances that you use. Perhaps you have strong cravings for opioids or you spend a lot of time thinking about when you will be able to take these substances next.

You likely have a serious opioid dependency problem if you continue to take opioids after you have noticed that your work or social life is suffering due to your taking of these substances. If your physical or mental health is declining as a result of your opioid use, then it is time to seek help from a drug rehab centre in Toronto.

Use Medications To Make The Transition Earlier

Especially if your opiate addiction is strong and has been a part of your life for some time, it is never advisable to quit opiates using the cold turkey method. The withdrawal symptoms following a sudden stoppage to using powerful opiates can wreak havoc on your body and mind. Symptoms such as extreme anxiety, sweating, vomiting, and diarrhea are all common when your body is seeking to restore itself to a healthier equilibrium. In cases of severe addiction, opiate withdrawal can even be fatal. For this reason, it is important to have trained drug rehab support from a professional team in Toronto to assist you through the withdrawal process and ensure that your health is maintained throughout this time.

In some cases, gradually weaning your dosage of opiates will allow your body and mind to adjust to a life without this substance. However, it is often advisable to follow a course of medication through opioid replacement therapy. For example, by switching out heroin for a less euphoria-inducing opioid such as methadone, your body and mind will have the opportunity to adjust to drug cravings in a more balanced way. Maintaining the use of a weaker opioid throughout the course of your treatment will allow you to mitigate the worst symptoms of opioid withdrawal and reduce the likelihood of relapsing back into your former opiate use patterns.

Take A Therapeutic Approach

In addition to medication, psychosocial therapy is an effective way of changing existing thought patterns and turning your mindset towards a healthier life course. At drug rehab centres in Toronto, a combined approach of medication and therapy allows patients to have higher rates of success in ridding their lives of opioid dependence.

Cognitive behavioural therapy, for example, is one of the most commonly used therapeutic methods for the treatment of opioid dependence. By focusing on coping strategies that you can use to deal with the inevitable drug cravings that will arise, CBT will provide you with the mental and behavioural tools you need to better regulate your thoughts and emotions regarding your addiction.

In addition to formal therapy, it is also commonly recommended that opioid-dependent patients seek out the support of a twelve-step program. Through peer-support, these programs are highly effective in providing patients with a solid network of encouragement and help to assist with getting through the inevitable trials and tribulations that post-addiction life will bring.

Person standing on two arrows that read “habits” and “changes”

Restore Your Body And Mind

In many cases of opiate dependence, substance abuse has served to mask other underlying issues that are plaguing the addict. For example, you may have been initially prescribed opiates to manage the pain of a chronic medical condition. Restoring these aspects of your health without the use of opiates is an effective means of keeping your opiate dependency at bay.

At drug rehab centres in Toronto, patients are instructed on how to bring a new balance to their health. Restoring your body after a period of prolonged malnutrition is important, as opioid dependence is commonly associated with a lack of proper eating habits. If you have a pre-existing disease, this also needs to be addressed in a way that avoids the use of strong pain management medications. Those who suffer from opioid dependence also frequently suffer from poor sleeping habits and slowly returning to a normal sleep cycle will assist in your recovery from this condition.

There Is Hope

While ridding your life of opioid dependence will be one of the most difficult trials of your life, the benefits of a drug-free life are worth the struggle. There is hope for those who are serious about kicking the habit for good. Through a combination of the techniques outlined here, and through the love and support of family, friends, and a peer-support network, you will find success in keeping opioid dependence at bay. There are many drug rehab centres in Toronto ready to help you along the way.

For more information on drug rehab in Toronto, contact us today.

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