Treatment Options for Opioid Addiction

PR Newswire PR Newswire • October 16, 2019

In 2019, reports suggest that more than 2.5 million Americans suffer from some form of opioid abuse. When this epidemic hits home and impacts a member of your family, it can create a lot of stress and worry. While there are a number of treatment options available to those looking to find help, it is not always easy to know which of these methods will yield the best results. To get your loved one the help he or she requires, you may need to conduct a bit of research and find the right fit.

Take a moment to explore some of these various treatment services for opioid abuse. Understanding the details can provide you with the data you need to make an informed decision and help your loved one through a difficult period.


The first step of almost any recovery plan is detoxification. No matter which route your family member plans on taking for his or her future, detox is crucial. Essentially, this part of the process involves an individual abstaining from using any more opioids; the goal is to get the drug out of the person’s system. While it sounds like a simple goal, the process can often prove to be one of the most challenging aspects of addiction. As soon as the body is no longer getting the hit of narcotics it demands, the symptoms of withdrawal begin.

Countless people struggle with addiction because of the intense withdrawal symptoms. The physical impact of withdrawal can cause severe pain in an individual and trigger chills, vomiting, headaches, irritability, mood swings and a number of other conditions. While organizations such as Narcotics Anonymous believe “cold turkey” detoxing to be the most effective way of beginning recovery, it is also the part of the process in which an addict may need the most help from family members and close friends, so be sure to take time to think about how you can best assist throughout this period.


After allowing time for the opioids to naturally leave a person’s body, there are several other options to consider. One of the more popular choices for addicts is abstinence. Essentially, this is a recovery process that requires an individual to abstain from ever using narcotics or opioids again. This method is also endorsed by Narcotics Anonymous and has proven to be one of the more effective options. Still, it is not without a fair share of obstacles.

Addiction can take many forms and impact people in different ways. While your loved one might have issues with heroin, for example, he or she may be more susceptible to using narcotics while drinking alcohol. If this is the case, then your loved one must also abstain from drinking alcohol. Completely cutting all drugs and alcoholic substances can be quite difficult, especially when these substances are used as coping mechanisms. Though it is one of the more effective options, there are other paths to consider.

Medication-Assisted Therapy

For many, the withdrawal symptoms and commitment to a sober future can be overwhelming. In extreme cases, withdrawal may complicate a person’s health issues. The strain placed on the body while it is going through withdrawals may add extra stress to the cardiovascular system and trigger heart attacks and other problems. To limit the odds of this happening and still see results, many people explore medication-assisted therapy. Also known as MAT, this is a program that utilizes specific medications to ease the symptoms associated with withdrawal from opioids.

Though MAT options have been shown to produce results and make the withdrawal experience more comfortable for addicts, there are still several concerns. The drugs involved in MAT therapy include methadone, buprenorphine and naloxone, and can actually intensify cravings for specific narcotics and cause a relapse. Before you make any decisions about MAT programs, speak with qualified professionals and weigh the pros and cons. This will help you find the most appropriate fit for the needs of your family.


As with detox, counseling is an aspect of the recovery process that can work well, no matter which treatment option is being pursued. Counseling has been shown to have a positive impact on the lives of those struggling with addiction, and a number of rehab facilities include therapy as a part of their recovery programs. A counselor can provide support and invaluable advice on how to cope with everyday life, leading to a much-needed boost of self-confidence in a person struggling with opioid abuse.

Counselors are also able to help a person adhere to the specific recovery process that he or she is involved with. Finding the right expert for the job can make a big difference in the outcome. Take time to find a counselor your loved one vibes with to make the most of this process.

One Day at a Time

There are a number of different options available when you are trying to help your loved one with opioid addiction. Give yourself time to weigh all of the various services before you to discover the right fit for the needs of your family.

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