Addiction affects millions of people and their loved ones every year. Our country is in the midst of an epidemic, and individuals are dying every day from drug overdoses. No particular race, sex, socioeconomic status, culture, or any other background hasn’t been affected by substance abuse. And as difficult as addiction is, there are thousands of recovery programs available. The United States has over 14,000 specialized drug treatment facilities, which continues to grow. In January of 2020, an estimated 3.7 million people in the US had received treatment for substance abuse. There are many more that need help, but places are either booked to capacity, or the addict is too scared to commit to getting help.
The Fear of Prescription Medication Detox
Once an addict has accepted that they have a problem, the next step is to enter treatment. However, fear keeps many people from starting a life of recovery, and sadly, many will die before they ever get the chance. Detoxing from prescription drugs or any substance can be difficult and painful. The side effects of the detox process can include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, sleeplessness, muscle pain and cramps, severe anxiety and depression, and countless other debilitating symptoms.
Why Are People Scared of Prescription Pill Withdrawal?
Certain substances like opioids, benzodiazepines, and alcohol require a supervised medical detox. It can be extremely dangerous trying to withdraw from these on your own due to the possibility of life-threatening seizure activity, amongst other complications. Therefore, fear of the detox process is a normal and valid fear. There are precautions that we take as a detox center, so people who are detoxing are in a safe environment. You never want to detox alone on certain drugs, it is best to be supervised and taken care of while getting off drugs such as benzos, alcohol, and opioids.
Coping With Fears of Prescription Pill Detox
How do you cope and get past this fear to get the help you need? More and more research has been done about addiction and how it affects the brain through the years. As a result, there are now many different medications and methods available to help people through detox. The National Institute on Drug Abuse “Treatment Approaches for Drug Addiction DrugFacts” reports:
Medications and devices can help suppress withdrawal symptoms during detoxification. Detoxification is not in itself “treatment,” but only the first step in the process. Patients who do not receive any further treatment after detoxification usually resume their drug use. One study of treatment facilities found that medications were used in almost 80 percent of detoxifications (SAMHSA, 2014). In November 2017, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted a new indication to an electronic stimulation device, NSS-2 Bridge, for use in helping reduce opioid withdrawal symptoms. This device is placed behind the ear and sends electrical pulses to stimulate certain brain nerves. Also, in May 2018, the FDA approved lofexidine, a non-opioid medicine designed to reduce opioid withdrawal symptoms. Patients can use medications to help re-establish normal brain function and decrease cravings. Medications are available for treatment of opioids (heroin, prescription pain relievers), tobacco (nicotine), and alcohol addiction. Scientists are developing other medications to treat stimulant (cocaine, methamphetamine) and cannabis (marijuana) addiction. People who use more than one drug, which is very common, need treatment for all substances they use. (NIDA)
Some discomfort with withdrawal is inevitable, but the major side effects can be successfully managed. In many cases, the medications used can even speed up the detox process, which allows the individual to start their road to recovery much sooner. Coping with the fear of detox can take time, but treatment has come a long way in recent years. Nevertheless, research on addiction continues, and new treatment methods will likely be approved.
Recovering From Addiction
Evoke Wellness has a network of drug and alcohol treatment centers that are carefully designed to offer a lasting solution for healing those suffering from substance use disorders. In addition, we offer a safe and comfortable environment for medical detoxification. Our patients are treated extensively so that minimal discomfort is experienced during the detox process. Evoke Wellness provides residential treatment in a structured environment and then provides you with after-care support, which is very important when being treated for addiction. Evoke Wellness is here to help you get on the road to long-term recovery. A sober life begins now!