Opioid Withdrawal: Key Facts For Families

The opioid crisis in this country continues to cause harm to many families across the nation. If you have a family member with an opioid addiction, then you're probably trying to help them the overcome their dependence on whatever form of opioid, such as heroin or morphine, they are using. Unfortunately, when someone tries to try to stop using an opioid to which they have become addicted, the body goes through very strong and discomforting withdrawal  pains. To avoid this discomfort, many users continue to abuse the harmful substance. This article takes a closer look at opioid withdrawal treatment and offers key information that family members of addicts need to know.


The symptoms of withdrawal often begin as soon as 12 hours after the suffer has taken their last dose of the addictive drug. Symptoms typically last for about five days to more than a week. In the early stages of withdrawal, notable symptoms will include things like as aching muscles, sweating, fever and interrupted sleep. Later in the process, issues such as nausea, vomiting, shivering and abdominal pain are frequently seen. Even after the physical symptoms have abated, psychological issues, such as drug cravings, may linger.


It's important to treat withdrawal  symptoms because otherwise sufferers may not be able to quit abusing the drug o. Typically, the symptoms will be treated in some sort of specialized facility or a hospital. Doing it in this type of institution is more likely to be successful than trying to treat someone's symptoms at their home.

Various medications can help addicts deal with their withdrawal symptoms and ultimately refrain from their opioid abuse. These medications include methadone and buprenorphine, among others.


Even after your family member has been successfully treated of their withdrawal symptoms and their addiction, they will need continuing support to avoid a relapse. Support can take various forms, including a strong social network of family and close friends. The recovering addict may also need more formal help, such as support from a group like Narcotics Anonymous or another 12-step program. Alternative options, including behavioral therapy and family counseling, may also prove to be beneficial.

Having a family member undergo withdrawal symptoms from an opioid dependence can be heart-rendering and traumatic. Fortunately, help is available to both you and your loved one as you navigate through this difficult experience. With proper medical treatment and continuing counseling, your family member will be able to move past their abuse problem and resume a normal life.