Family & Friends Resources

Coping with Opiate Withdrawal Symptoms

Watching someone you love suffer with opiate addiction is devastating. Watching them go through the physical and mental symptoms of withdrawal is distressing.  Watching their life change for the worse is heartbreaking.  We can help.  

ANewU is an outpatient opiate treatment facility.  Your loved one can heal themselves while they keep their job and continue with their responsibilities while they rely upon you, their support structure.

The body needs time to recover when opiate drug usage stops. Trying to cope with withdrawal symptoms at home—without professional help—can be very difficult and dangerous, especially if withdrawal symptoms are severe.  ANewU uses Suboxone and related medications to allow your loved one to smoothly transition from their dependence on pain pills by eliminating the debilitating effects of withdrawal.  You will see a difference the ANewU treatment program makes almost immediately.

What is Opiate Withdrawal?

ANewU understands the continued use of opiates (Oxycontin, Percocet, Methadone, Dilaudid, Heroin and others) will naturally cause a physical dependence in the patient - their body and brain will crave the drug.  The euphoric effects or opiate “high” from the drugs only last a short time and when they subside, withdrawal symptoms set in. ​

Withdrawals are the painful and debilitating symptoms caused when the effects of the opiate drug subside in the body.  Users rely upon opiate drugs not only for their euphoric effects, but also to stave off or prevent the onset of withdrawal symptoms.  Therefore, users are constantly using the drugs and are constantly seeking the drugs not only for the euphoric effect, but also so they do not get sick (withdrawals).

Over time and consistent use, drug tolerance builds and larger amounts of the drug are needed to achieve the same level of euphoria.  Withdrawal symptoms also appear faster and with more intensity.  Common symptoms of withdrawal, in early stages, may include: anxiety, agitation, sweating, runny nose, watery eyes, insomnia, yawning, and muscle aches. Advanced withdrawal symptoms can include: dilated pupils, goosebumps, nausea, abdominal cramping, vomiting, and diarrhea.

How Family & Friends Can Help

Plan to spend as much time as possible with your loved one.  They have already made the first step in getting help by becoming a patient and starting Suboxone treatment.  Encourage they attend counseling sessions which have been proven to dramatically increase the chances of them staying sober.

Many patients in the beginning stages of treatment will be lethargic.  The opiates they previously used gave them energy, and now they no longer take them.  Encourage your loved one to eat light, healthy, easy-to-digest meals. Stress the importance of drinking water regularly to stay hydrated.  Exercise and sunshine help a great deal as well.

Many patients, especially in the beginning of treatment are bored.  Remember they spent most of the hours of their day thinking about opiates – where to get them, when to take them, how many do I have – it consumed them, day by day, hour by hour.  Now that is gone and they don’t know what to do or what to think about. 

ANewU recommends patients to start or return to a hobby.  Volunteering is another option.  It’s difficult to feel sorry for yourself when you are helping others less fortunate than you.  Perhaps you could also distract your loved one with fun activities—playing a board game, watching a movie, playing cards or going for a stroll. Patients benefit from strong support systems comprised of family and friends. Just being there with a helping hand or to listen can do a world of good for a recovering addict.

Also, remember that patience is vital to progress.  Patience transforms relationships.  Patience helps us accept others as they are and produces tolerance. Many patients do not succeed their first time in treatment whether it be the office based Suboxone treatment we offer or an in-house treatment program.  Many patients do not succeed the second time.   Opiate dependence/addiction can even be a lifetime struggle for some.  ANewU is here to help your loved one and we know you will be there for them as well.

The Best Opiate Withdrawal Solution

Physical detoxification is the first step towards an addiction-free life. ANewU Suboxone based treatment facility provides a safe, welcoming, and confidential environment for the outpatient treatment of drug addiction to opiates and narcotic painkillers. ANewU provides only one medical service – outpatient opiate detoxification.  ANewU can make a difference.  Call or email us today for more information. 

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