Fentanyl is a prescription opioid used to treat severe pain from surgery, an accident, or a major injury. When a person takes fentanyl, it creates a surge of chemicals in the brain, including dopamine, which creates feelings of pleasure and happiness. The effect of fentanyl, therefore, is two-fold – it fights pain, and it also creates euphoria and relaxation. People who abuse fentanyl often start out wanting to recreate these pleasant feelings, but the use quickly becomes abuse, dependence, and addiction. Fentanyl addiction treatment involves detox to flush the body of the toxin, an intensive, inpatient program, relapse prevention and aftercare including outpatient care.
Though similar to heroin, fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that is 100 times more potent than morphine (heroin is about five times more potent). This means that fentanyl is even more addictive than heroin, and users are more likely to overdose from it. Though users may not be aware, heroin is often cut with fentanyl, drastically increasing its potency and the likelihood of overdose and death.
In 2016, 11 million Americans misused prescription opioid painkillers like fentanyl, and over 2 million had an opioid addiction or were dependent on them. Moreover, fentanyl use and abuse are increasing in the United States; fentanyl was only responsible for about 1,000 deaths between 2005 and 2007, but in 2016 fentanyl was involved in around 20,000 opioid-related overdose deaths.
Residential Inpatient Treatment for Fentanyl Abuse
The most effective fentanyl abuse treatment option is an inpatient program. These programs provide a clean, safe, and sober environment where clients can go through detox and withdrawal to get sober, and then get the therapy needed to stay that way. At an inpatient facility, clients remain at the center 24 hours a day until their treatment is complete, which normally takes between 30 and 90 days. During that time, clients will have supervision, structure, access to medical care, and access to therapy, support, and programs that will help them build the foundation for lifelong recovery. The types of therapy to expect during inpatient treatment include:
- Individual therapy to help clients understand their motivations and triggers.
- Group sessions to provide clients with a strong support network of peers.
- Mediated family therapy to help loved ones work through the pain caused by addiction and aid them in how to best support their family member or loved one.
- Alternative therapies like art and hypnotherapy to help clients gain a better understanding of the situations that led to their addiction.
- Wellness workshops to help clients develop healthy lifestyles and habits
- Relapse prevention training to help clients stay sober after they leave treatment.
Outpatient Treatment for Fentanyl Abuse
Outpatient care is hugely beneficial in the early days of recovery. This is ideal for clients as a follow up to inpatient residential treatment, or for those who can’t get enough time away from work, school, and other responsibilities to commit to inpatient treatment. The main benefit of outpatient is that clients live at home during treatment, and just have to travel to the center for therapy and programs once a week.
We recommend an intensive outpatient program (IOP) before regular outpatient. IOPs include treatment 3 days a week. IOP tends to last about 3 months, and then clients can transfer to regular outpatient when they’re ready. During IOP and outpatient treatment, clients will still have access to all the same therapy options and program offerings as inpatient programs.
Types of Therapies for Fentanyl Abuse
One of the most effective treatment therapies for fentanyl abuse is cognitive behavioral therapy (an element of dialectical behavior therapy or DBT), which is a type of therapy that focuses on getting patients to recognize the negative thoughts, emotions, and beliefs that led to their addiction. Once a patient recognizes these things, he or she can work on cultivating more positive beliefs and work on being aware of how negative thoughts affect behavior. The major benefit of CBT is that it can help patients understand the motivations and reasons for their addiction, help them identify their stresses and triggers, and provide healthier and more effective coping mechanisms. This leads to better mental health overall and helps clients prevent relapses.
Get Help at Futures for Fentanyl Abuse Treatment
Futures of Palm Beach provides effective and evidence-based fentanyl abuse treatment giving clients with the best possible chance of long-term recovery. This includes a full range of treatment options – inpatient, IOP, outpatient, and aftercare – and therapy types, as well as having trained and accredited therapists, mental health professionals, and staff on-site to administer expert care.
The first step in recovery is to get the information you need to make the best choices for treatment. Call Futures today to start the conversation.