How to treat tramadol addiction
Do you need help with tramadol?
Are you ready to treat a tramadol problem? Sometimes it’s hard to know when you’re ready. Sometimes, it comes down to being tired of how tramadol is affecting your life. Or maybe other people are telling you that you need to seek help. Whatever the the reason, if you are ready to face a possible tramadol addiction, you don’t have to do it alone. There are several ways you can stop taking tramadol, go through tramadol withdrawal syndrome, and treat possible addiction, as well as many places to ask for help.
So, what can help tramadol addiction? What are the resources available that can aid in your recovery? We explore the answers in to these questions here. If you still have any questions or comments about tramadol addictio we invite you share at the bottom.
Why does tramadol addiction occur?
Tramadol has both opioid and non-opioid properties and is widely used because it is not a scheduled medication. In fact, physicians have thought of tramadol as having low potential for abuse and dependence. However, now there are more instances and evidence of people becoming physically and psychologically dependent on tramadol. And while tramadol addiction usually shows up in cases when people are addicted to other prescription drugs and medications, a new group of users is also emerging. Tramadol tolerance: how long? While the phenomena of tolerance and drug dependence are highly individual, it can take only a few weeks to develop tolerance to tramadol.
Am I addicted to tramadol?
There are several factors that play into prescription drug addiction. This is because addiction is both a physical and a psychological condition. But what distinguishes tramadol addiction from dependency is an emotional need to use tramadol to help with negatives aspects of life. Sometimes, because tramadol is so frequently prescribed, addiction is less noticeable and harder to pinpoint. Here are a few signs to look out for if you think you or someone you know is addicted to tramadol:
- exceeding your tramadol use beyond prescribed parameters
- feeling like your body needs tramadol to function normally
- continued use of tramadol regardless of how it affects you negatively
- doctor shopping to maintain a constant supply of tramadol
- obssessive thinking or craving tramadol
- the presence of withdrawal symptoms when you stop taking tramadol
Keep in mind that usually people are not addicted to tramadol alone. Many times people have to deal with more than one addiction. Other substances such as alcohol, illicit drugs, and other prescriptions drugs may be involved. You may be combating addiction in general and the importance of staying away from all substances is key.
Treating tramadol addiction
Effective treatment for drug addiction involves withdrawal treatment along with long term recovery maintenance. In general, approaching addiction holistically is key. The integration of behavioral and pharmacological therapies has been looked upon as being the most effective ways to help treat addiction. The two strategies described below address both the physical and psychological components of tramadol dependency.
1. Medications for tramadol addiction treatment
Primarily, medications for tramadol addiction treatment target the chemistry of the nervous system. Medicines such as clonidine or benzodiazepines might be used during acute withdrawal from tramadol. Over-the-counter medications such as NSAIDs can help with acute withdrawal symptoms. You may also need the temporary prescription of anti-depressants called SSRI’s (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) because serotonin syndrome that can occur during recovery and withdrawal from tramadol. Altered mood states are one of the biggest things to be careful of in recovery. Talk to a psychiatrist to help with any medications you may need.
It is always important to be careful with the medications you take for tramadol addiction treatment. If you have a high potential for addiction, it is possible that you substitute one drug for another.
2. Behavioral treatments for hydrocodone addiction
Behavioral therapies treat the emotional and psychological underpinnings of addiction. This can include one-on-one and group therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, contingency management, motivational enhancement therapy, and 12 step facilitation therapy. The main principle of psychological treatment for opiate addictions like tramadol is to understand, monitor, and control the compulsion to use tramadol. Behavioral treatments for addiction also help you understand and identify triggers which compel tramadol use. But quite literally, there are hundreds of therapy modalities possible for treating the behavioral elements of drug addiction. To find what works best for you may be overwhelming, but once you find where you belong, you will feel hopeful to maintain your recovery.
Help for tramadol addiction
There aren’t as many tramadol-specific addiction resources out there as exist for other drugs of use. However, tramadol is a opioid and most opiate addictions present themselves in a similar same way. Below are different resources where you can find help to support and treat tramadol addiction.
1. Tramadol addiction treatment center
Addiction treatment centers are also commonly known as rehab facilities. They inpatient treatment programs are designed to last for a couple of weeks up to several months. They take you out of your known environment and give you a safe place to explore the root of your addiction and well as a place to recover and to learn tools necessary to maintain abstinence from tramadol and any other substance you may be addicted to.
2. Tramadol detox clinic
If you are wanting to detox from tramadol, look for an opiate specific detox clinic. Detoxing from tramadol can be painful, and sometimes dangerous as it has been known to provoke atypical symptoms such as seizures. Detox clinics offer a save environment with medical supervision to help you in the first 24-72 hours of your withdrawal process. Under supervision you can also be given medications that help not only withdrawal symptoms but help the overall recovery of addiction. Detox addresses the physical aspects of tramadol dependency. After going through a medical detox from tramadol, you will need to seek out other psychological methods of help.
3. Clinical psychologists and psychiatrists
There are hundreds of psychologists and psychiatrists that specialize in treating opiate addition, or addiction in general. They have an intimate understanding of addiction and how it affects not only the body, but also your psyche and interpersonal relationships. Clinical psychologists can also help you explore the roots of addictive behavior, and help you to help yourself. Clinical psychiatrists are also doctors that can help you figure out if you need any medications during tramadol recovery. Psychiatrists can also diagnose any underling mental conditions that exacerbate tramadol addiction. For example, because tramadol use changes your brain chemistry over time, you may need the support of anti-depressants. A psychiatrist can prescribe these.
4. Tramadol addiction support groups
There are several types of support groups you can seek out. The most commonly known are the 12 step groups such as Narcotics Anonymous (NA) or Alcoholics Anonymous (AA). There are also self-help groups like SMART Recovery or Rational Recovery, as well as local outpatient support groups for drug addiction at a local hospital or mental health center. Finding a support of people with experience in prescription drug abuse specifically may work best for you.
5. Licensed clinical social workers
Social workers are trained counselor who work with people diagnosed with mental health issues and substance abuse. They can reach out into the community and help get you back on your feet. Social workers can also help be a guide in your addiction recovery and help you to navigate treatments and the options that are available to you.
6. Your physician
Since it was your doctor who probably first prescribed your tramadol, go talk to them. Your family doctor or general practitioner can help you seek help for tramadol addiction. Also, they can help you taper your tramadol dosage so that you can minimze the severity and intesity of tramadol withdrawal symptoms. Medical doctors can also help you with referrals to therapists and support groups that can help aid in your recovery and end your dependence on tramadol.
7. A trusted religious or spiritual leader
Spiritual communities help people maintain recovery. If you have detoxed and recovered from tramadol use, a religious leader can be there for you during the moments you feel like you want to use again; they are there to help you maintain your recovery. If you trust someone that you can talk to or a community where you fit in, seek them out.
How to treat tramadol addiction questions
Do you still have questions about treating tramadol addiction? Please share your questions and experiences with treating tramadol addiction below. We’ll try to respond to your questions personally and promptly.
References Sources: NIDA: Principles of Drug Addiction Treatment
Pub Med Health: tramadol
SAMHSA: Significant Growth in Opiate addiction treatment
Photo credit: Alfonsina Blyde >>