Codeine Abuse Recovery
Codeine Abuse Recovery
Addiction, like many other diseases,
can be treated most effectively if it is diagnosed early. The key,
of course, is to make the diagnosis, which is very difficult if the
disease has yet to take hold and seriously impact a person’s life.
That is the biggest problem with those
who “abuse” drugs, but are not technically addicted. You can see
that codeine abuse recovery becomes a sticking point, because the
problem isn’t fully understood.
Abuser is last to admit problem
Don’t look for support from the
abuser, because in the vast majority of cases, they do not think
there is anything wrong. For example, a man is prescribed codeine
for the control of moderate pain. Codeine, an opioid, and a
naturally occurring substance in the opium poppy plant, is highly
Because of this doctors will prescribe
a specific amount, to be taken at specific times of the day, for a
specific period of time. Taken as directed, there shouldn’t be an
issue, but human nature almost always pushes the limit.
Results not good enough
The man takes the medicine as directed,
but maybe he isn’t satisfied with the results. The pill he took
was effective in taking away most of the discomfort, but he wants
more, so he takes two pills instead of one. That is abuse. Taking
any substance for other than its intended purpose is abuse.
That might sound like a very narrow
definition, but it’s necessary because abuse and addiction,
depending on who you talk to, are the same thing. He takes two
pills, then he decides to take his medicine more often. He runs out
of the prescription, but he’s in luck because the doctor gave him a
refill. The controls on opioid drugs are rather tight, so the
refills are not endless. Therefore, the man goes to another doctor
and gets a new prescription.
Begins to use for recreation
A couple of things are happening. The
original intent was to control pain, but that need is more than
likely gone. People can get a euphoric high from an opioid, or
mellow out and really feel good.
They use the drug for recreation. The
brain is changed. The drug has altered its chemical balance and it
begins to think that it needs the drug to feel “normal.” The
user develops a psychological addiction. The user may also be
developing a physical addiction, meaning that he just won’t feel
right without the drug in his system.
How can you tell addiction from
What is the dividing line between abuse
and addiction? It depends on the individual. The underlying problem
the user has is simple. As time goes along and the abuse continues,
the body will build a tolerance to the drug, meaning more and more
drug will be needed to achieve the desired effect.
To get high requires far more drug than
the small amount needed to control mild to moderate pain. The abuser
can’t get enough prescriptions from enough doctors, so the “doctor
shopping” is not a long-term solution. He goes out on the street
to buy his drug of choice. Another problem he faces is the fact that
a prescription drug is more expensive than other opiates, to what
started as an abuse of codeine turns into an addiction to heroin.
Back to the beginning of Codeine
That gets us back to our starting
point. The best way to attack a problem is to identify it early.
That’s where friends and family play an important role. The man
who got the codeine prescription to control pain starts pushing the
limits. It is helpful when someone else can see what is happening and
take steps to intercede.
The key is to get the person into
treatment. Let’s say they are building the psychological
addiction, the earlier the better and there are therapies to assist
in halting the abuse before it becomes a serious, even
Codeine Abuse Recovery is a
COMPLETE change in lifestyle
Recovery is a lifestyle change.
After treatment, abusers have to discontinue the old pattern of
behavior and build new patterns, make better choices. For codeine
abusers, most often an out patient treatment, followed by
participation in the recovery community is very effective.
Recovering abusers and addicts provide
a wonderful source of support and encouragement. Recovery people are
open, honest and willing to help others face their disease.
Narcotics Anonymous, for example, has meetings in just about every
town and those meetings provide acceptance and understanding. The 12
Step recovery process has proven to be powerful in transforming
millions of people, helping them become healthy, happy and
Codeine abuse recovery is a matter of
recognizing the problem and taking action. The sooner the better.