How to Help a Loved One Overcome Opiate Addiction

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Opiate addiction recovery can be a lengthy process that takes a considerable amount of effort and determination. Watching a recovering addict struggle with drug-using urges on a day-in-day-out basis often leaves loved ones feeling powerless to help.

Helping your loved one overcome opiate addiction will require outside help, both professional and supportive. More than anything else, ensuring the necessary treatment supports are in place goes a long way towards equipping your loved one with the needed tools for overcoming opiate addiction. In the process, it’s also important to ensure your own self-care needs are being met along the way.

The Need for Opiate Addiction Treatment Help

Returning home after going through a detox or residential treatment program can be a jarring experience for someone in recovery. Without the structure and guidance of a treatment program, a person can easily stray off track and end up using again.

While your loved one may appear to be getting back to normal after stopping drug use, the effects of opiate addiction have taken root within his or her thinking and emotions. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, in order to undo these effects, recovering addicts must work through the destructive thinking patterns that feed into compulsive drug-using behavior. Otherwise, drug-using tendencies will likely resurface over time.

Essential Treatment Supports

Overcome Opiate Addiction

You can help your loved one by making sure they receive the various forms of treatment that ensure a successful recovery.

Staying engaged in the recovery process is half the battle when it comes to maintaining continued abstinence on a day-to-day basis. For these reasons, recovering addicts should make it a point to follow through on any aftercare recommendations made after completing detox and/or residential.

Depending on the severity of a person’s addictions, aftercare recommendations may include one or more treatment services, some of which include:

  • Ongoing psychotherapy
  • Group therapy
  • 12-Step support group attendance and participation
  • Getting a sponsor

According to the Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration, these interventions not only help keep your loved one engaged in the opiate addiction recovery process, but also enable him or her to develop the types of coping skills needed to maintain abstinence on a long-term basis.

Self-Care Issues

Addiction not only wreaks havoc in the addict’s life, but also impacts the family’s overall health as a unit. Over time, certain destructive communication patterns start to develop between family members, patterns that can easily resurface when a loved one returns home.

While the recovering addict must make an effort to work his or her recovery program, you may also need to address the effects addiction has had in your life. For these reasons, it’s important to ensure your treatment needs are met as well. Self-care issues also address the importance of setting limits in terms of what you will and will not tolerate in the event your loved starts using again.

Finding the Best Inpatient Opiate Addiction Treatment for Yourself or a Loved One


More often than not, opiate addiction recovery requires active participation on the addict’s part as well as participation from those closest to him or her. Neglecting to follow-through on meeting everyone’s treatment needs increases the likelihood of relapse and continued turmoil within the family.

If you or someone you know has a loved one in opiate addiction recovery and have questions about how the recovery process works, please feel free to call our toll-free helpline at 800-442-6158 Who Answers? to speak with one of our addictions specialists.

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