More than 130 people die every day from overdosing on opioids. While some might imagine these deaths stem from illegal Schedule 1 drugs, such as heroin, the rate of addiction to legal controlled substances, such as prescription opioids, is in fact astronomical. Find out about sober living after tramadol abuse treatment.
Tramadol, for instance, is a synthetic opioid normally prescribed for pain, but for former addicts and other vulnerable populations, it is easy to fall into a pattern of dependence and abuse and become addicted to tramadol.
Tramadol, like many opioids, activates opioid receptors in the brain. The result is that pain signals are blocked and users can find medically prescribed relief from their suffering. However, there are side effects to activating the opioid receptors. One such side effect is a feeling of euphoria.
This feeling is what lends the substance its appeal as a drug of abuse. Over time, however, as the brain becomes accustomed to its dose, greater and greater quantities of tramadol are required to feel the “high.”
Withdrawal symptoms at these high doses also become more acute. What results is a physical and often psychological dependence on the substance. It is at this point, if not earlier, that addicts should seek addiction treatment.
While talking to your doctor and tapering off of tramadol is an option for those taking low doses, for others specific treatment programs are often advisable. Outpatient counseling is often a good idea, but sometimes an addict’s life is so unmanageable that living a normal life can feel all but impossible.
In these cases, inpatient treatment options can be most beneficial. It is important to be educated about these treatment modalities so an addict can find the best option for his or her unique circumstances.
A sober living home is a drug and alcohol free environment where addicts can live for a period of time, often after going through a medical detox and rehab. It is often an interim period between rehab and entering the “real world.”
Sober living homes vary in the amount of structure they provide, but they tend to be supervised and offer services that enable addicts to continue their recovery. Successfully maintaining sobriety often requires completely altering how addicts once lived their lives, so working on rebuilding one’s life in the context of a sober living can be helpful.
One quality that sober living homes and inpatient treatment options have in common is a focus on building a social support system. Many studies have shown that one of the most important factors for recovery from substance abuse is social support. Quitting a substance, whether tramadol or alcohol, is rarely a matter of individual solitary willpower.
After all, many addicts are very aware that their behavior is destructive and harms their lives. What makes addiction so painful is that the substance has created a psychological and physical dependence that makes it nearly impossible to muster up the willpower required to stop taking the drug.
In the case of tramadol, the continual activation of the opioid receptors hijacks the brain’s reward system, meaning that continuing to take tramadol becomes, to the brain, about as important as continuing to eat, sleep, and breathe. Thus, quitting alone is rarely the answer. At a sober living, addicts can find the social support they need in order to facilitate a recovery.
At a sober living home, it is common for residents to take communal responsibility for the home and for each other. Mandatory chores for the house can help instill a sense of responsibility. Additionally, residents are often guided through the process of rebuilding a life from the ground up. This can include getting a job, repairing relationships with family, and managing necessary prescribed medications.
It is a fact that many addicts also have other untreated mental health problems. At a structured sober living, they refer to outside services such as outpatients and other medical professionals that are capable of recognizing these problems and can help an addict get the help they need so that they can continue to work on building a life and becoming independent.
Many sober living homes are structured around 12-step programs such as Alcoholics Anonymous. Daily meeting attendance is often a crucial part of an addict’s recovery, so at many sober living houses residents will attend these meetings together on a daily basis. This helps build a foundation for recovery that can carry on to their lives after they leave the sober living house.
Having begun and often finished the 12 steps while living in a sober living, former addicts who leave the house are often involved enough in the Alcoholics Anonymous community that their recovery can continue on an outpatient basis.
One recent study on sober living showed that one of the biggest obstacles to recovery is a lack of access to sober environments. Being around former drinking partners are circumstances where one is encouraged to abuse drugs or drink can be triggering for recently sober ex-addicts.
For many addicts who have abused drugs for years, their entire lives often revolve around substances. Thus, simply getting sober personally is rarely a sufficient solution. Being around other people in recovery at a sober living home is crucial not just to getting sober but to maintaining sobriety.
Attending a sober living home, even several months after successfully getting sober, can often be the best approach for a former addict’s mental health and for their chances of staying drug free.