Drug addiction is still one of the more taboo factions of mental health. Many people struggle to understand that addiction is a disease similar to depression or the flu. Although there are around 36 million people struggling with opiate addiction around the world, there are still many misconceptions about here. So we’ve debunked some of the most common myths about opioid detox and addiction.
Myth 1: It’s Easy to Detox By Yourself
Detox, or detoxification, is the process of allowing the body to naturally cleanse itself of the drugs. On the surface, it sounds easy. Simply stop using opiates and allow the body to purge them from your system.
However, detox leads to intense withdrawal symptoms. Opiate detox is particularly rough, and withdrawal without medical support can be dangerous. Not only are there intense physical symptoms, such as nausea, insomnia, and body aches, there are also psychological symptoms such as depression and anxiety. These symptoms can be dangerous without medical help, can take longer, and many patients relapse when trying to go cold turkey on their own.
Myth 2: Opiate Addictions All Use Street Drugs
When people hear opiate addict, they often assume the person is using illicit street drugs such as heroin. It may surprise people to learn that many opiate addictions start their addiction from legitimate means. They often get prescribed opiate painkillers after an accident or surgery and develop a dependency without realizing.
Prescription opioids are hard to get through and more expensive. That is why many people who started with prescription pills do eventually move on to heroin or illicit drugs. They are easier to get, much cheaper, and give a stronger high. That’s why it’s important to seek help as soon as you realize you are dependent on any opioids, prescription or otherwise.
Myth 3: Opiate Addiction is For Life
There’s a common phrase people believe: once an addict always an addict. There is some truth to that. Addiction is a life long disease, even if a person goes years without using they will always struggle with those temptations. However, that doesn’t mean people cannot overcome their addiction and lead a normal, healthy life.
Opiates may be hard to detox from, and relapses are common, but it is possible to beat your addiction. Here at Delray Center for Addiction Medicine, we offer a great outpatient detox program as well as Suboxone treatment to help with opiate addictions.