Opiates are a rather broad category of drugs that include heroin and morphine as well as many types of prescribed painkillers such as codeine, hydrocodone and Oxycontin. Studies found in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that as many as nearly 10% of the United States population has abused opiates and about 1/3 of the population has been prescribed these drugs at least once in their lifetime.
Opiates can cause extreme physical and psychological dependence that is difficult to overcome. Opiate rehab provides a safe atmosphere for those who are addicted to opiates to get the counseling and therapy as well as medical treatment necessary to facilitate recovery. For help finding the best opiate rehab, call our helpline at 800-442-6158 Who Answers? .
Inpatient Opiate Rehab
Often times, opiate addiction treatment requires extensive medical monitoring to ensure the safety of the recovering addict and to keep him or her away from the potential for relapse. Inpatient opiate rehab provides a place to live, healthy meals, and on-site counseling and therapy that can effectively help an individual who is addicted to opiates to overcome the addiction and get their lives set on a path to sobriety. Inpatient rehab programs vary in terms of their duration and cost.
There are many benefits to inpatient rehab including:
- Safety from relapse
- Around-the-clock medical monitoring
- Psychiatric support
- Group therapy
- Medical intervention
- Medication based detox
Each of these benefits can work to assist the patient in feeling more comfortable during their treatment and comfort can help them to keep pushing forward with their recovery goals even during difficult or trying times.
Two particularly important benefits associated with inpatient opiate rehab are the factors of 24 hour medical monitoring and living in a completely drug-free environment. When individuals detox from opiates they may experience a lowered tolerance for the drugs. If detox is done at home, in an outpatient environment, or even in a very short-term inpatient medical detox, once the person gets out they are at a higher risk of overdose. According to the University of California at San Francisco, this has been seen in prison inmates as well as in recently detoxed patients that they often relapse shortly upon release, and often take the same amounts of the drugs as previously, but their systems are not accustomed to this anymore and they experience a potentially fatal overdose. With inpatient treatment, the risk still exists for when an individual gets out, but while in treatment they are under supervision and have no access to drugs, contrary to outpatient treatment where they may have access in between treatment sessions. The longer someone stays in inpatient treatment, the longer they have had to adjust to drug-free life while still being monitored.
Who Needs Inpatient Opiate Treatment?
Not everyone who is addicted to opiates will require the extensive monitoring and care that is provided by an inpatient treatment facility. Medication replacement therapies such as Methadone Maintenance or Suboxone treatment have made it possible for many opiate abusers to quit using opiates with limited withdrawals and without the need of intensive inpatient treatment. That said, the development of those drugs does not necessarily negate the need for inpatient treatment. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, these medications are helpful in their ability to curb drug cravings and physical withdrawal symptoms. Opiate addiction is a multifaceted disease, and simply taking a medication is not enough for many people. It can help, no doubt, but it will likely also be necessary for individuals to supplement their treatment with some sort of counseling and support groups. While this can be in either in inpatient or an outpatient setting, an inpatient treatment program will work best for individuals who lack support at home, who are unable to say no to temptation, who may tried outpatient treatment unsuccessfully, and those who very much need to get out of the environment they’re currently in due to its effect on their drug use. While inpatient treatment is the ideal choice for some, for others a less all-encompassing model of treatment and care may be just as beneficial.
Outpatient Opiate Rehab
Those who have great support networks through friends or family members and who are less likely to relapse can find great comfort in the counseling and therapy that is provided at outpatient rehab centers. These programs offer many of the same services that can be found in an inpatient opiate addiction treatment facility but they do not require the patient to live in the treatment facility and they do not impact the daily routines of the user quite so heavily. Outpatient rehab is ideal for people who are under a doctor’s care and being monitored under a methadone maintenance program or Suboxone program, and it can also be a good step in the recovery process for individuals who have just completed inpatient programs.
Outpatient rehab centers for opiate addiction usually provide drug screenings, which is essential to being sure of an individual’s stage in the recovery process. They usually also offer one-on-one counseling in addition to group counseling sessions.
The benefits of outpatient opiate rehab include:
- Ability to keep going to work or school without interruptions
- Ability to live at home with family
- Ability to receive counseling and support without interruption in normal routines
- Minor medical monitoring to ensure patient safety
- Less costly
Who Needs Outpatient Rehab?
There is no one-size-fits all method of opiate addiction treatment. Opiate addiction differs from one person to the next and therefore, the methods of treatment must also differ. Outpatient rehab can adhere to lifestyles that include daily work, school or other routines that prevent the user from being admitted into a rehabilitation program that requires them to be away from their daily routines. Those who have significant family support and who are under a doctor’s supervision may benefit from the treatment that can be provided in an outpatient opiate rehabilitation program, as well as those who do not have the resources to go to inpatient treatment.
An important factor leading you to outpatient rehab is also the environment you live in and the support you have. If you have a loving family and group of friends who you know will support you along the way and will help you through this difficult time, you are more likely than someone who does not to do well in outpatient rehab. Support is an important factor in recovery, and those who have less of it may benefit more from inpatient rehab where they can find the support they need. In terms of environment, if you are unable to extract yourself from tempting, dangerous situations that will lead you to drug use, outpatient treatment may not be right for you. On the other hand, if you are able to stay away from drugs, criminal activity, and other environmental triggers that would lead you to use opiates, you have a better chance of doing well in outpatient rehab.
Respect for Privacy of Patients
The decision to seek treatment for an opiate dependence problem may take you many years to make and there’s no reason why a risk of having your privacy leaked should keep you from getting the help that you need. Opiate rehab programs respect the privacy of each and every one of their patients and you can rest assured that your privacy will be very important to the medical and professional staff at these programs. In fact, inpatient opiate rehabs are required by federal law, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA), to protect the privacy of patients which means that they are not allowed to disclose information about the health, wellness or addiction of any patients who enter the facility—not to anyone!
How Long Does Opiate Rehab Last?
Opiate rehab can last for many weeks, many months or possibly years. Most people who are admitted into an inpatient treatment program for opiate addiction will spend at least 30 days in the program but the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) recommends that patients attend treatment for a period of at least 90 days in order to fully promote behavioral change. Less than 90 days has shown limited effectiveness in drug addiction treatment, while outcomes improve greatly for lengths significantly greater than 90 days, or 3 months.
It takes more than a month to effectively change a bad behavior or habit. Recommendations are that patients should first detox (a process which could take anywhere from 5-30 days depending on severity of the addiction) and then attend a treatment program of at least 90 days which includes behavioral therapy and individual as well as group counseling. For methadone maintenance patients, 12 months is considered the minimum, according to NIDA, but many patients benefit from the treatment for many years.
You may find that you continue to receive the assistance of a counselor or therapist for many months or even years following an opiate addiction—that’s ok. The changes that occur in the brain as a result of opiate addiction can lead to depression, an inability to feel emotionally satisfied and other problems that are best treated with counseling and therapy. Additionally, studies show that those who spend prolonged periods of time in therapy following opiate detox are more likely to abstain from future drug use and to stay sober. For some people, this could mean attending meetings such as Narcotics Anonymous 12-step meetings, or any other type of support group. According to the US National Library of Medicine, it can be difficult to encourage people to continue with some sort of outpatient or support group addiction aftercare, but it is highly recommended especially in the context of addiction as a chronic condition.
Types of Opiate Rehab
If you’ve decided to seek help, you may be wondering what your options are for opiate addiction treatment. The fact is, there are many different types of opiate rehab that can be beneficial to you. Most often, patients are admitted either to an inpatient rehab program or they take part in outpatient treatment. However, there are many sub-specialties that can provide great benefits to those who require treatment.
Some of the types of opiate rehab include:
- Inpatient rehab
- Outpatient rehab
- Holistic rehab
- Natural rehab
- Sober living
- Support groups
- Rapid detox
For many people, support groups are an important part of opiate addiction recovery. While they are not commonly used on their own, support groups usually supplement another form of opiate rehab. Most people will attend support groups while in outpatient or inpatient treatment, while others will start attending them after completing a program. On their own support groups can help with addiction recovery, but many people need the extra support provided by detox programs or other opiate rehabs first.
One of the most well-known support groups for opiate addiction is Narcotics Anonymous. NA uses a 12-step program for addiction recovery. This involves 12 consecutive steps where individuals admit their addiction and their lack of control over it, recognize and submit to a higher power, recognize past errors, help others, and help themselves. The mutual support, structure, and spirituality helps many people sustain their recovery.
Rapid Opiate Detox
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, ultrarapid opiate detox is a detox method that uses a general anesthetic to relieve opiate withdrawal symptoms. The idea behind it is that the discomfort of withdrawal will be mitigated and the detox will go quickly so the individuals can enter the next stage of opiate addiction treatment. How it works is that a general anesthetic is used to sedate the patient for several hours, and in the meantime an opiate blocker causes withdrawal to occur. Rather than having detox last 5 to 7 days, rapid detox can be undertaken in one day. The NIDA study referenced above found, however, that withdrawal may be no less painful with rapid detox.
Dual Diagnosis Treatment
Dual diagnosis refers to the presence of at least one mental health condition and one substance use disorder, and it is not uncommon for these to types of conditions to go together. In fact, Bryn Mawr College reports that as many as 50% of people with mental illness also have a substance use disorder. An individual who is addicted to some kind of opiates may very well be suffering from a mental health disorder, and should be properly treated. Gone untreated, or with just one condition treated, an individual is not as likely to have success in treatment and sustain recovery. Effective dual diagnosis treatment uses an integrated approach that addresses an individual’s mental health as well as their opiate addiction.
More Info about the Types of Opiate Addiction Treatment
The method or type of treatment that works best for you may consist of a combination of the above types of treatment that are commonly provided for those suffering from opiate addiction. Understanding the differences between the various types of rehab that are offered can help you to make an informed decision about treatment for yourself or for someone you love.
One thing to note is that at each different kind of rehab center, the type of opiate addiction treatment offered will likely be one of, or a combination of these three things: detoxification, medication, and behavioral therapy, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Treatment for opiate addiction begins with detox, where you will rid your body of the drugs. Due to the intense physical and psychological withdrawal symptoms associated with opiate detox, medication is often used. Medications like methadone and Suboxone help curb drug cravings and mitigate withdrawal symptoms and are often used to maintain long-term opiate recovery. Whether they are used or not, medical attention is very helpful in this stage of opiate addiction recovery. Behavioral therapy methods like contingency management, which includes the use of incentives for drug abstinence, and cognitive behavioral therapy are commonly used to treat opioid addiction.
Finding Opiate Rehab
There are many drug rehab facilities across the US, each varying in what it offers, how much it costs, and where it is. In addition to the directory above, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration provides a very useful treatment locator tool for finding a rehab center that works for you. Click here to check it out.
An important thing to consider before you look for opiate rehab is your health insurance plan. Many plans, especially following the Affordable Care Act, include some form of substance abuse treatment. Your plan may only cover certain facilities, a certain length of time, or have other restrictions, but it is a good place to start when looking for treatment.
Other considerations to make when finding and choosing treatment for opiate addiction are the cost of treatment and your financial situation, the environment you are in and whether you want/need to be near to or far from it, the support system you have, and the possibility that you could have a mental health condition or are using other drugs.
If you need additional help, call our helpline at 800-442-6158 Who Answers? to talk to a counselor who can provide you with details about the opiate rehab and addiction treatment programs in your area. It’s never too late to get help and to begin treatment for your addiction.