When a person wants to quit abusing a drug such as Oxycontin, it can be a challenge without the right support, resources and information. Quitting cold turkey can be difficult and is not recommended for health reasons. Long-term use of Oxycontin causes dependence and possibly addiction. It is difficult to quit without experiencing withdrawal. Find out what happens when a person quits abusing Oxycontin and how to seek help for addiction.
Most times it is not possible to quit Oxycontin cold turkey. Abruptly stopping the medication can create strong withdrawal symptoms which may tempt a person to use the medication again. While some can quit, it may be counterproductive for others. Addiction includes some serious underlying psychological issues also underlying use which may need to be addressed in order to best cope with the problem. The following happens when a person quits:
- The body adjusts to having Oxycontin in the system for extended periods of time
- Once it stops, withdrawal begins because the body cannot function without the drug
- Withdrawal symptoms begin
A few short weeks of Oxycontin use can result in dependence. Withdrawal may be worse if a person has taken the drug over longer periods, over several years, to help treat chronic pain. Withdrawal can include a number of side effects, such as:
- Abdominal cramping
- Muscle aches
A person who quits Oxycontin suddenly may experience symptoms that can have negative consequences on a person’s health. Doctors recommend tapering the dosage to avoid withdrawal effects. Suddenly stopping the medication can cause a relapse if the individual is trying to avoid withdrawal symptoms.
How to Quit Safely
Gradual reduction of Oxycontin doses over several weeks or months is generally the best way to stop taking Oxycontin. Talking to a treating physician is generally more appropriate regarding dosage schedules to taper off safely without negative repercussions. The instructions must be followed by a person’s doctor to ensure safety and efficacy of getting off the drugs. Safe medical treatments may include medication to support easing off Oxycontin for good.
Addiction treatment centers and recovery programs are designed to support individuals quitting Oxycontin. Some of the treatment options may include:
- Inpatient treatment programs with 24-hour oversight for people in recovery
- Outpatient treatment programs involving 1-3 sessions a week in treatment
- Group counseling for those in early stages of treatment and recovery to promote engagement with others and supports recovery process
- Individual counseling which may include cognitive behavioral therapy
- Teen treatment programs for adolescent substance use
- 12-step programs including Narcotics Anonymous (NA)
Appropriate aftercare or follow-up care is an important part of sustaining recovery following treatment. Many people leave inpatient programs to step down into outpatient programs for a period of time. Reinforcement of skills learned during inpatient treatment help prevent relapse and support a long term recovery.
If you or a loved one are struggling to quit Oxycontin, many avenues exist to the pathway of recovery. The Villa offers resources and tools to support your journey, no matter where you are. Call us to find out more and get started.