Morphine, a potent prescription opioid painkiller, is frequently abused, behaviors which lead to physical dependency, addiction, and withdrawal. Withdrawal occurs when a person’s body is physically dependent on the drug to function and they suddenly stop or drastically reduce their drug abuse.
Quitting “cold turkey” like this can create painful and intolerable withdrawal symptoms, which untreated, often lead people back to morphine abuse. The purpose of a medically-supervised detox is to diminish and relieve these symptoms as best as possible, most typically by the aid of medications. A comprehensive detoxification program sets the groundwork for rehabilitation and recovery, physical and mental healing, and a more fulfilling, grounded life.
What Is Morphine?
Morphine is a highly addictive opiate (narcotic) analgesic, or opioid painkiller synthesized from the opium poppy. Despite being naturally-derived, this substance has a high potential for abuse, behaviors which can quickly lead to a physical dependency and addiction.
Like other drugs within the opioid class, morphine produces pain-relieving effects and a euphoric state due to the way it impacts the brain. When used to treat moderate to severe pain, morphine is delivered as a:
- extended-release capsule and tablet
- injectable solution
- liquid solution to be taken orally
Any of these forms may be abused, either orally or by injection, with the goal being self-medication or inducing a euphoric state. Misusing your own morphine prescription for either of these purposes is considered drug abuse.
No matter if you misuse your prescription these ways or seek out another person’s for the purpose of creating pleasurable feelings, you’re exposing yourself to the possibility of addiction and health risks, including withdrawal. Prolonged abuse of morphine can create intense physical dependencies which in turn set the stage for morphine withdrawal.
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When a person uses morphine on a regular basis their body becomes reliant on it, a state which is called a physical dependency. When a dependent individual abruptly stops using morphine or significantly reduces their dose their body becomes very shocked. The symptoms which follow are known as withdrawal.
A physical dependency can happen through both prescribed use and patterns of morphine abuse and addiction. A physical dependency from use which adheres to prescribed guidelines does not mean a person is addicted.
While withdrawal is a characteristic of addiction, it must also be accompanied by a tolerance, cravings, and patterns of drug seeking and using, among others, in order for a person’s behaviors to qualify as addiction. This happens as a person’s casual use gains momentum and becomes more frequent, morphing into addiction.
A physically dependent person should not quit morphine suddenly, or “cold turkey,” doing so could bring about acute withdrawal. Without steady doses of morphine, a person’s body reacts strongly, experiencing physical and mental complications, such as:
- achy muscles
- runny nose
- stomach cramps
- teary eyes
Morphine withdrawal is not in itself deadly, however, certain side effects which occur may lead to life-threatening circumstances. Should a person get sick and breathe their vomit in they could choke or develop aspiration pneumonia, either of which could be deadly. This is only one reason why it is inadvisable and dangerous to withdrawal at home.
Selecting a medically-supervised detoxification program gives you access to the treatment methods, medications, and expert support which best support your body and mind during this transitional time.
Detoxification: Treating Morphine Withdrawal
The primary aim of medically-supervised detox is to reduce or alleviate withdrawal symptoms.
Withdrawal from morphine can be overwhelming. Though outpatient detoxification programs exist, the 24/7 care offered through an inpatient detoxification program is often the preferable choice, since it offers greater protection and support during this trying time. This constant access to highly-trained medical staff and research-based treatments can make a huge difference in a person’s success, both during and after treatment.
Without the help of a comprehensive detoxification program many people may turn back to morphine as a means to avoid withdrawal and stop cravings. Returning to drug abuse increases your risk of illness, disease, overdose, and death.
As an opioid, treatment for morphine withdrawal is most commonly treated with buprenorphine (Suboxone, Subutex, and Zubsolv) and methadone. These medications work on the opioid receptor sites in a person’s brain, reducing symptoms and cravings, so that a person’s body has an opportunity to start cleansing and healing in preparation for the next stage of treatment. These goals are achieved through a gradual taper, which allows your body and brain time to adjust to the absence of morphine in a safe and more comfortable way.
Withdrawal can be mentally and emotionally strenuous. To alleviate anxiety, fear, or other tumultuous mindsets, a variety of other medications may be used. Companionship can be priceless during this time, and treatment staff not only administer medical treatments to reduce these feelings, but they offer support, encouragement, and even an ear when things get overwhelming.
Addiction can deplete a person’s body, upsetting their physical health so that their body struggles to function properly. Fluid hydration and nutritional supplementation may be offered during this time. As your body starts to regain its natural balance, and function more efficiently on its own, other aspects of addiction will be treated, should you choose to progress to a drug rehabilitation program.
Rehabilitation For Morphine Addiction
After detoxing your body, you need to cleanse your mind and emotional self as well. Treating the psychological addiction and preparing a person for a sober life is the primary focus of drug rehabilitation.
Refraining from this treatment decreases the opportunity for healing and and increase the odds that a person relapse back to morphine. Choosing this treatment increases your chance of obtaining a more fulfilling drug-free life. Like detoxification, an inpatient drug rehab program offers the most comprehensive level of care and access to potentially life-changing treatments.
Healing comes in many forms, many of which are facilitated by psychotherapies, or “talk therapies” and peer support groups. Individual and group therapy sessions focus on resolving the dysfunctional and negative thoughts and emotions which lead to the damaging behaviors associated with addiction.
When you learn to overcome these and develop positive mindsets and actions in their place, you’re more equipped to handle the situations life brings your way in a manner which protects your sobriety.
For More Information Related to “Morphine Withdrawal And Detox” Be Sure To Check Out These Additional Resources From DrugRehab.org:
- Heroin and Opioid Addiction Statistics
- Opiate Epidemic Is Changing Pain Management
- The 45 Warning Signs Of Prescription Drug Abuse
- 5 Symptoms Of Opioid Withdrawal
- Signs Of An Opioid Relapse