Morphine withdrawal treatment – did you ever think that you would need to look for such a resource? Morphine is regularly given in hospitals to ease pain after surgery, and quite often, people go home with a prescription. Yes, morphine eases pain, but it’s a highly addictive opioid. If you feel like you are dependent on morphine and need morphine withdrawal treatment, you’re not alone. It is estimated that between 26.5 million and 36 million people abuse opioids worldwide. And research from 2002 showed deaths from opioid analgesic poisoning (painkillers, like morphine) as more common than death by heroin or cocaine.1
Now what? Life is unbearable with dependency on morphine. You become ill if you don’t continue taking it. A common way to treat opioid addiction is with medication-assisted treatment. The user takes a substance such as methadone or buprenorphine to ease and prevent the withdrawal symptoms. Those substances are long-acting opioids that are legal and also block the effects of the opioids you are addicted to. The methadone or buprenorphine ‘trick’ the body into thinking it has what it needs without creating the craving that comes with a short-acting opioid like morphine.
Evidence-based treatment for morphine withdrawal treatment
There is a clinical term called evidence-based treatment, which is a way of saying that research supports a treatment protocol. For opioid addiction, evidence shows that methadone maintenance is more effective when it includes individual and or group counseling. When patients have other resources, such as medical/psychiatric, psychological, or social service (employment or family services), outcomes continue to improve.
The Rockefeller University Hospital developed The First Pharmacological Treatment for Narcotic Addiction: methadone maintenance starting in 1962. If you would like to know the history and the evidence for morphine withdrawal treatment, you’ll enjoy reading the full article. Truly, the efforts of these researchers continue to save lives almost 60 years later.
What you can expect in morphine withdrawal treatment
To be successful, you need a safe way to withdraw from the effects of morphine as well as medical supervision. Facilities that are certified by CARF, the Commission on the Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities, must follow strict guidelines for treatment.
When you stop taking morphine, even with medication-assistance, you have psychological and emotional withdrawal. Morphine has been an important part of your life, and that is changing. While the change is for the better, you still need to have ways to cope with the anxiety and irritability that come with making such a big transition. Just remember that the discomfort you feel is going to get better. If you are taking methadone or buprenorphine, going back to morphine to ease the discomfort won’t work. The medication blocks the effects. Depending on how much you were using, and how long, your withdrawal will completely end in 7 – 10 days. Then, you’ll be on a maintenance dose while you work with counselors to get back to the life you want. When you start feeling better at this point, you will gain momentum to stay on the journey to being sober.
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