Rehab Centres UK

How To Help Someone That is Addicted to Opiates

How To Help Someone That is Addicted to Opiates

Watching a loved one battle opiate addiction can be a heartbreaking and challenging experience.

Addiction to opiates, whether in the form of prescription painkillers or illicit drugs like heroin, is a serious health concern that requires understanding, patience, and professional help.

At Rehab Centres UK, we can assist in finding suitable rehabilitation facilities. In this guide, we’ll explore practical ways you can support someone trapped in the cycle of opiate addiction.


Understanding Opiate Addiction

Before diving into how you can help, it’s essential to understand the nature of opiate addiction.

Opiates, including prescription medications like codeine, morphine, and oxycodone, as well as illicit drugs like heroin, interact with the brain’s receptors.

This creates intense feelings of euphoria and pain relief/ pain management. However, these substances are highly addictive.

Whether a loved one takes opiates for chronic pain caused by injury, cancer, or surgery, or takes illicit opiates, abusing opiates increases the risk of physical and psychological dependence.

Opiate addiction is extremely risky. These powerful pain-relieving drugs can trick the brain, causing intense cravings and dependence. People who misuse opiates face grave dangers like an opioid overdose, which can be life-threatening.

The drugs slow down breathing and heart rate, leading to unconsciousness or even death. Addiction can also wreck personal lives, relationships, and careers, as it becomes the main focus.

Quitting is tough due to opioid withdrawal symptoms, which can feel awful. Seeking help is crucial; treatment, therapy, and support from loved ones can break the cycle. Remember, opiates may ease pain, but their addiction can hurt much worse.


Be an Active Listener

One of the most impactful things you can do for someone who is addicted to opioid medications is to be an active and empathetic listener. Let them share their thoughts, feelings, and experiences without judgment.

Encourage open conversations where they feel safe discussing their struggles, fears, and desires for recovery.


Educate Yourself

Educating yourself about opiate addiction is a crucial step in providing practical support. Learn about the signs of addiction, withdrawal symptoms, and the potential long-term effects of opiate abuse.

This knowledge will enable you to approach the situation with empathy and understanding.


Express Your Concerns

Address the issue with compassion and concern. Choose a time when you can have a private and calm conversation.

Express your worry about their well-being, health, and the impact of their addiction on their life. Avoid blaming or shaming them, as this can cause them to become defensive.


Offer Emotional Support

Emotional support is essential during this challenging time. Let your loved one know that you are there for them, no matter what.

Reassure them that you believe in their ability to overcome the addiction and that you’ll stand by their side throughout the recovery journey.


Encourage Professional Help

While your support is invaluable, opiate addiction often requires professional intervention. Encourage your loved one to seek help from medical professionals and addiction specialists.

If your loved one does not seek support, the addiction can progress. If they continue to abuse opioids and take higher doses, this can lead to an overdose.

Likewise, there can be other side effects that can be debilitating – addiction can impact their finances, relationships, and of course, their physical and mental health.

Mention resources like Rehab Centres UK. We can determine the best way forward in terms of opiate detox and opiate rehab.


Assist in Research

Help your loved one research different treatment options available in the UK. This can include outpatient programs, inpatient rehab, detoxification facilities, and support groups.

Provide them with information about what to expect during the recovery process, which can alleviate some of their fears.


Be Patient

Recovery from opiate addiction is a challenging and ongoing process. It’s essential to be patient and understanding, as setbacks can happen.

Relapses are not uncommon and should be viewed as opportunities to learn and reinforce commitment to recovery.


Create a Supportive Environment

Your loved one’s environment can significantly impact their recovery journey. If possible, help them create a safe and supportive living space that encourages healthy habits. Remove any triggers or reminders of their past drug use.


Offer Practical Assistance

Opiate addiction can make even basic daily tasks seem overwhelming. Offer practical assistance when needed, such as helping with grocery shopping, cooking meals, or running errands. These small gestures can make a big difference in their recovery process.


Celebrate Milestones

Every step towards recovery is worth celebrating. Acknowledge and celebrate their milestones, whether it’s completing a week without using, attending a therapy session, or reaching a personal goal. Your encouragement can boost their motivation and self-confidence.


Practice Self-Care

Supporting someone with opiate addiction can be emotionally draining. Remember to take care of your own well-being as well.

Engage in activities that bring you joy and relaxation, and consider seeking support from friends, family, or support groups.


Intervene When Necessary

If your loved one’s addiction is putting their life at risk or they’re resistant to seeking help, you might need to consider staging an intervention.

Consult with addiction specialists or therapists before taking this step, as interventions should be conducted with care and professional guidance.


Stay Committed

Recovery from opiate addiction is a lifelong journey. Your ongoing commitment and support can play a vital role in their sustained recovery.

Stay informed, involved, and available as they navigate the challenges and triumphs of their path towards a healthier life.

Helping someone battling opiate addiction requires compassion, understanding, and patience. Encourage them to seek professional help through resources like Rehab Centres UK. We can find the best opiate rehab clinic that meets their needs and preferences.

By being a supportive presence and assisting them in finding the right treatment options, you can contribute significantly to their journey of recovery.

Remember that addiction is a complex issue, and your unwavering support can make all the difference in their lives.

Nicholas Conn

Nicholas Conn

Nicholas is UK's go-to man on addiction-related matters for the national press, TV and Radio. He has consulted for many private addiction rehab centres throughout the years and set up one of the largest addiction advisory services in the UK.