Treatment for Fentanyl Addiction
When a person seeks help for fentanyl addiction, many treatment forms can help. Generally, fentanyl addiction treatment is done along with a continuum of care. This process starts with medical fentanyl detox and continues through rehab, addiction treatment programs and aftercare.
Detox is the first step in quitting fentanyl. Detox is recommended to take place in a medical detox facility instead of trying to stop fentanyl at home.
When a person tries to quit fentanyl on their own, they often go into withdrawal. This occurs when the brain gets used to fentanyl’s presence, and chemistry changes accordingly to adapt. Therefore, the brain’s chemistry is thrown off balance if the drug is suddenly stopped. This can cause withdrawal symptoms like:
- Achy muscles
- Watery eyes and nose
- Enlarged pupils
- Abdominal cramps
- Nausea and vomiting
When someone attempts detox at home, these symptoms can be so unpleasant that a person may give up on quitting fentanyl, increasing the risk of relapse. In contrast, when a person undergoes detox in a medical detox facility, withdrawal symptoms can be treated as they occur. Medication-assisted treatment (MAT) with methadone or buprenorphine-based products may be used as medically appropriate to both ease withdrawal symptoms and reduce the risk of cravings and relapse over the long term.
Fentanyl Addiction Treatment Programs
Following medical detox, rehab helps you examine why you began using fentanyl in the first place. You can develop coping skills to resist fentanyl and develop healthier habits in therapy. Many rehab options exist, including:
- Inpatient rehab: During inpatient rehab, you live at the rehab facility so you can fully focus your energy on healing and recovering from fentanyl.
- Partial hospitalization program: Partial hospitalization is a step between highly structured inpatient and less structured outpatient rehab options. The program is up to 20 hours a week and seven days a week.
- Intensive outpatient rehab: Intensive outpatient rehab bridges partial hospitalization and outpatient rehab. You live at home but attend intensive rehab sessions to learn how to transition back to outside life.
- Outpatient rehab: In outpatient rehab, you live at home in a sober living environment and attend rehab sessions at the rehab facility. Teletherapy options may also be available.
- Dual diagnosis: Substance abuse is commonly associated with mental health problems. In dual diagnosis, the substance abuse issue and the mental health component are treated simultaneously.
Maintaining attention and focusing on recovery after rehab is complete is still important. Aftercare helps with this. In aftercare, you participate in programs that keep your recovery at the forefront of your mind over the long term to support your continued success. Aftercare options include:
- Continued medication-assisted treatment if medically appropriate
- Continued therapy
- Group therapy
- Support groups like Narcotics Anonymous
- Sober living environments