Opioid addiction is very common throughout New England, but one drug in this class is known to be significantly more dangerous than the rest: fentanyl. Because of the proportion of overdose deaths involving this powerful pain medication is so high, it’s especially important to have access to resources for support when you or a loved one is struggling with fentanyl addiction.
Here are a few tips for getting help when facing addiction to fentanyl.
The Urgent Danger of Fentanyl Addiction
All substance use disorders (SUDs) require urgent treatment to encourage long-lasting recovery, but for many, fentanyl is seen as one the most dire, and not without good reason. In 2021, fentanyl was found to have been involved in over 93% of overdose deaths in Massachusetts alone, largely due to the fact that fentanyl is estimated to be around 50 to 100 times more powerful than morphine.
The sheer strength of the drug — mixed with the fact that street-manufactured varieties often contain other dangerous impurities — means that it’s exceptionally easy to become addicted and suffer an overdose.
Steps to Getting Help with Fentanyl Addiction
If you or a loved one are abusing fentanyl, it’s never too soon to get help. Not only is persistent use dangerous to your health, but also, abusing any types of drugs or alcohol can have long-lasting effects on your relationships, your ability to hold a job, and other negative consequences.
Don’t Be Afraid to Reach Out
Most people abusing addictive substances hide their behavior from their loved ones. The first step to getting help for fentanyl addiction is to make your closest friends or family members aware of your situation. Getting the help you need isn’t easy — you should have as much support and encouragement as possible at the earliest opportunity you can.
Dispose of Your Drugs
To remove the temptation to continue using fentanyl, dispose of your remaining supply as quickly as possible. Prescription drugs that contain fentanyl are on the FDA’s flush list, meaning that it’s safe to flush them down the toilet.
If you’re not sure if you can safely flush your fentanyl, the FDA’s recommendation is to deposit them into a nearby trash can, preferably mixed with an “unpalatable substance,” like rotten food.
Seek Professional Help Immediately
Shortly after stopping your use of fentanyl, you’ll enter a period called “withdrawal.” This is a time in which you’ll begin to experience a variety of uncomfortable symptoms — including fever, nausea and vomiting, elevated heart rate and blood pressure, and others — in addition to severe cravings for fentanyl.
Undergoing this phase of recovery in a safe, comfortable environment under the supervision of trained medical professionals will make it more comfortable and decrease potential dangers to your health.
Fentanyl Addiction Treatment at Baystate Recovery Center
At Baystate Recovery Center, we understand the challenges associated with getting help with fentanyl addiction. That’s why we make our services readily accessible to clients from within Massachusetts, surrounding states, and beyond. With a full continuum of care that ranges from detox and residential treatment to various levels of outpatient care, we can make your recovery as smooth and personalized as you need to embark on a lifetime journey of sobriety.
If you or a loved one are struggling with fentanyl addiction, contact us today and learn about your options to get the help you need.
Baystate Recovery Center, a clinically Infused 12-Step Treatment Center for Drug and Alcohol Addiction, was founded by two partners in addiction treatment services, John Checchi and Michael Wilson.