The word “rehab” usually brings to mind something that’s only needed for street drugs like heroin and cocaine. However, the misuse of a prescription medication like tramadol can easily lead to a substance use disorder requiring treatment.
People don’t always realize they’ve developed an addiction when they become dependent on a medication prescribed by a doctor. However, this is a common occurrence. When it happens to you, a substance use treatment program can help you get back on track.
The Bluffs offers a range of inpatient addiction treatment programs. Give us a call at 850.374.5331 today to learn more about getting help for tramadol abuse.
What Is Tramadol Abuse?
Tramadol abuse refers to the misuse of the prescription painkiller tramadol. Tramadol is a synthetic opioid, the same type of drug as fentanyl and oxycodone. It’s often prescribed after surgery or to help a patient deal with severe pain.
Ongoing use of tramadol leads to increased tolerance. This means that over time, a person needs to take increasing amounts to feel the same effect.
When tramadol has been prescribed for pain, it can become tempting for a person to take a higher dose than directed or to take it more frequently than directed.
Signs of Tramadol Abuse
Purchasing tramadol illegally and taking another person’s prescription medication are two obvious signs of tramadol abuse. However, a person can abuse tramadol even when they have a prescription from a doctor.
Signs of abusing a tramadol prescription include:
- Taking a higher dose than prescribed
- Taking doses more frequently than instructed
- Altering method of use, like crushing and snorting a pill
- Seeking multiple prescriptions from different doctors
- Feigning pain levels for continued prescriptions
- Unpleasant withdrawal symptoms
Although tramadol is a legally available medication, it isn’t without risks. Long-term use brings serious short- and long-term side effects, can impact all areas of a person’s life, and can lead to a substance use disorder.
The Effects of Tramadol Abuse
Tramadol is an opioid. This category of drug is known for the significant effects it has on a person’s body and mind. Two key effects of tramadol abuse are tolerance and dependence.
As with any opioid, continued use of tramadol impacts key areas of the brain. As a person uses more tramadol, tolerance builds up, and the brain and body become dependent on increasing amounts of the drug.
Brain chemistry and physiological responses adapt to the accustomed dose. This leads to a physical and psychological need to continue using tramadol.
Another concerning effect of tramadol abuse is an inability to stop taking the medication. It’s common to experience withdrawal symptoms that interfere with a person’s attempts to stop using tramadol, including:
- Severe pain
If you experience these or other symptoms of discomfort after stopping or reducing tramadol dosage, it’s a sure sign that you’ve developed a dependence on the medication.
Depending on the level of dependence, attempting to stop using tramadol without medical supervision can be harmful or dangerous for your health. Withdrawal symptoms are a sign that you should contact a rehab and enroll in a medically supervised detox program.
Tramadol abuse’s long-term effects include a negative impact on emotional health, mental health, relationships, and quality of life. Dependence on tramadol can seriously detract from overall well-being, especially when it’s used for a long period.
Find Rehab for Addiction at The Bluffs
Don’t wait to ask for help with tramadol abuse. Long-term effects of using tramadol include a serious toll on health and happiness. Even using tramadol for a short period can lead to dependence.
The Bluffs offers detox and treatment services for individuals struggling with tramadol abuse. We help patients dealing with substance abuse at any level.
If you’re concerned tramadol abuse is an issue for yourself or a loved one, we’re here to help. Call 850.374.5331 and ask about getting help for tramadol abuse at The Bluffs.