Opioids are a form of drugs that act on the nervous system and produce temporary feelings of pleasure. Though some of them are prescribed legally by the health care providers, others are illegal to use.
Further, the misuse of opioid prescriptions, heroin causes addiction that may take a serious toll on health. According to the National Institute Of Drug Abuse, more than 70,200 Americans died of drug overdoses, including prescription opioids.
So, it is necessary to find effective ways to alleviate the dependency on the drug. Here are the five ways that may help you minimize the risk-
Discuss Openly With Your Doctor
Before prescribing opioids, the doctor will ask the patient about your pain or medical history. Those who had a past substance use disorder are at a higher risk of developing an addiction. Further, if someone in the patient’s family suffers from opioid abuse, it also increases his/her chances of drug dependency.
So, if you have been prescribed opioids, it is crucial to discuss your background honestly and openly with the doctor. By doing so, you help the doctor to develop your treatment plan with appropriate dosage instructions. It is good to involve a trusted friend or family member who can help to monitor your medications.
Take Medications As Prescribed By The Physician
Opioid addiction leads to changes in certain areas of the brain that alters mood and behavior. In addition to this, long-term opioid prescription affects all your body’s system. By suddenly cutting off the opioid supply, you might feel symptoms such as:
- Chills and goosebumps
- Nausea and vomiting
- Large pupils
- Drugs cravings
- Body aches
- Severe bad moods
So, if you are prescribed opioids, avoid reducing the dosage on your own as it can be dangerous. Also, if you aren’t getting any significant relief from prescriptions, don’t decide to exceed the dosage without consulting the doctor.
Taking therapy programs, behavioral counseling, and proper medications can help you stay opioid-free.
You can also consider Ibogaine treatment that helps to alleviate opioid addictions symptoms. Let us put some light on how does ibogaine work to reduce drug cravings. When you take this drug, it gets converted into ‘Noribogaine’ that targets the area of the brain affected by addictive behaviors. It allows the brain to res-structure itself to the pre-addiction state.
Look For Opioid Alternatives
There are many non-opioid pain medications that are available over-the-counter or through prescription. Some of the examples are Ibuprofen, Aspirin, Acetaminophen, and steroids. You may also get relief through non-drug therapies such as:
It is a traditional Chinese procedure in which thin needles are inserted at different places in the skin to interrupt the pain signals. This method is quite effective in headache, migraines, osteoarthritis, neck, or back pain.
If other treatments fail to provide relief, surgery can help to cure the abnormalities in the body that might be responsible for pain.
You can opt for physical therapies that include exercise programs, yoga, meditation, massage, etc. to soothe mind and body. It is one of the most effective methods to reduce substance dependency.
Nerve Blocks Or Injections
If you have nerve pain or muscle spasm, injections along with medications can help alleviate pain.
Avoid Using Painkillers As A Last Resort
In order to prevent drug abuse, you might consider waiting to take opioids until the pain becomes unbearable. However, doing so can cause you to take more medications than required. Therefore, it is recommended to follow the doctor’s orders.
Wean Yourself Off The Drug Safely
The body develops a tolerance and craves for more of a substance to feel the effects if you take it for long times. When the body doesn’t get those effects, you feel withdrawal symptoms. Suddenly stopping the prescriptions might worsen the situation.
It is wise to talk with a doctor who can help you safely take off or gradually reduce the dosage, without compromising your health.
Don’t Forget To Discard The Opioids Properly
When you no longer need the prescription opioids or other medications, make sure to dispose of properly. It will reduce the chance of other people accidentally taking medicine and prevent drugs from entering the environment.
No doubt, opioids are excellent pain relievers, but they are addictive as well. If you are dealing with substance abuse, these tips can help you reduce the symptoms and lead a productive life.