While opioids can be very helpful in treating pain, they are still potentially dangerous for those who do not take them as prescribed. Fortunately, most people who are prescribed opioids do not abuse them (about 87.2%), but for those that do, it can lead to addiction and potentially overdose. The body can build up a tolerance for opioid medications very quickly. Then, when an individual tries to stop using, they notice withdrawal symptoms that are very uncomfortable. 


Often, people will continue using opioids to avoid experiencing those withdrawal symptoms because they can be debilitating. Unfortunately, as use becomes more and more out of control and the body builds up more of a tolerance, the risk of overdose increases and can easily happen with opioids. Overdosing on prescription opioids other than methadone accounted for 48,006 deaths from June 2019 to June 2020. 


Which Drugs are Prescription Opioids?

Opioids that are commonly prescribed to patients for pain include hydrocodone (Vicodin), oxycodone (Oxycontin and Percocet), oxymorphone (Opana), morphine (Kadian and Avinza), codeine, and fentanyl. 


What are the Signs of Prescription Opioid Abuse?

The most common reasons people report misusing opioids are because they have physical pain, they want to relax, they are experimenting with drugs, they want to get high, it helps them sleep, to cope with feelings or emotions, they have cravings for the opioids, or they use it to increase or decrease the effects of other drugs that they’re using.


Common signs that someone is experiencing addiction to prescription opioids are the following: 

  • If they are prescribed opioids themselves, they will start finding ways to get pills from other sources, such as doctor shopping, getting them off the streets, or claiming that they need early refills because their prescription was lost or stolen. 
  • Showing signs of withdrawals, such as sweating, diarrhea, muscle aches, runny nose, nausea/vomiting, dilated pupils. 
  • Drowsiness, confusion, constipation, euphoria, or slow breathing 
  • Being overly sedated and may appear to be “nodding off”. 
  • They are unable to function in their relationships or within their obligations properly.


What Treatment Works Best for Prescription Opioid Addiction? 

There are a few different methods that can be beneficial for prescription opioid treatment, including:

  • Buprenorphine and methadone bind to the same opioid receptors in the brain as opioid medicines reduce cravings and withdrawals.
  • Naltrexone blocks opioids receptors and prevents opioids from having an effect.
  • Behavioral therapies are traditional, evidence-based approaches used in most substance abuse treatment.


Get the Best Treatment at Singing Tree Recovery

Singing Tree Recovery offers state-of-the-art treatment in Northern California. You will be able to receive quality California inpatient treatment for your substance use and mental health concerns while being comfortable and healthy. Once you arrive, we offer medically assisted detox and residential treatment. We provide round-the-clock care with experienced and highly trained staff who are excited to provide you with one on one treatment. 


Our clinician-to-patient ratio of 3:1 allows this. In addition to therapy for addiction and mental health, we also offer help with nutrition, art therapy, grief counseling, yoga, life skills, and more. We will work alongside you to tailor an individualized treatment plan with our client-focused and highly customizable curriculum.

There are over 14,000 drug rehab centers in the United States. But there’s only one Singing Tree Recovery. Contact us today with a confidential and free call to start your journey to recovery.

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