Heroin abuse and all types of opioid addiction often lead to intense changes in the body and the brain. When heroin addiction sets in, for example, the brain’s chemistry is altered so much that a person feels compelled to use drugs. Sometimes, these effects linger for a long time, leading to post-acute withdrawal syndrome. At Blueprint Recovery, we offer tools to help clients overcome the challenges they face in this situation.
What Is Post-Acute Withdrawal Syndrome?
When a person is in a medically supervised detox program, including for opioid addiction, they may feel acute physical discomfort, often for a short time. This is acute withdrawal. The symptoms may be significant and typically include nausea, pain in the muscles, and other forms of discomfort. This process of detox is the physical aspect.
The second part of the process is post-acute withdrawal syndrome. This is the part of the process in which the brain has to adjust to a new world without those substances. This phase requires recalibration of the brain after the heroin abuse stops. During this stage, people are more likely to experience emotional and mental health symptoms. This may include:
- Intense paranoia
- Trouble thinking and concentrating
- Intense fatigue
- Urges and cravings
Some people also react more significantly to stress, often lashing out to others when it may not be called for or expected. Others have trouble with a lack of motivation and sink into what feels like an intense low.
Most of the time, this phase occurs about a week or up to several months into the detoxification and healing process. It can seem to come on quickly, last for a while, and then begin to subside. However, post-acute withdrawal syndrome is one of the most common reasons for people to relapse.
What Happens with Heroin Abuse to Cause This?
Heroin abuse is one example of when this type of withdrawal phase can happen. It does occur with heroin addiction and other drugs, including alcohol, cocaine, and meth. Those who have an opioid addiction typically will develop a dependence on the drug within a matter of weeks of beginning their use. When dependence occurs, it creates a change in the brain. The body recognizes opioids as a way to feel good. As a result, it continues to seek out more sources of it.
When a person enters the detox process for heroin addiction, the body begins to show physical symptoms of that process. Intense headaches, muscle and bone pain, and fatigue are some of the most common initial experiences. From there, and often a few weeks into treatment, post-acute withdrawal syndrome may occur, leading to anxiety and panic, or other symptoms.
How to Avoid Opioid Addiction Relapse
It is critical for those entering into therapy to have tools available to aid in detoxing. That does not mean you need a full detox program but medications to ease the pain and discomfort of the withdrawal process. These medications can also ease post-acute withdrawal syndrome. Additionally, therapy can help.
At Blueprint Recovery, we offer a comprehensive program designed to help you through all stages of withdrawal. It is designed for most types of opioid addiction as well as other drugs. To learn more about how we can help, check out these treatment options:
- Men’s rehab center
- Women’s rehab center
- Partial hospitalization program
- Intensive outpatient program
- Outpatient treatment program
Expect Outstanding Support – Call Blueprint Recovery Today
For those experiencing opioid addiction, including heroin addiction, post-acute withdrawal syndrome can occur easily. When it does, you need to know there is help available. Our team at Blueprint Recovery is available for heroin abuse or other drug abuse and ready to help. Call 833.654.1004 or connect with us online for the support needed.