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Local Rehab Investigates Opioid Tapering

Abingdon, VA - ReVIDA® Recovery is a local rehab that recently published a blog investigating opioid tapering. With locations throughout the Appalachian area, ReVIDA® Recovery works to provide quality substance use disorder treatment along with medication-assisted therapy (MAT).

“Opioid tapering is the gradual reduction of opioids in the body. Patients must go through the tapering process with a physician and not alone. It is a precise process, and can even be dangerous when not carried out properly. The exact way to carry out opioid tapering also depends on each individual, so medical expertise is vital in guiding the process,” the article begins.

There are two methods when tapering, slow and rapid, which is also known as fast. Slow tapering involves lowering the dose of the opioid by 10% to 25% every week to a month, and once the patient achieves the lowest dose, reducing days of taking it until they aren’t taking the opioid anymore at all. This method is for long-term opioid use, typically greater than 6 months. Fast tapering Fast tapering involves reducing the opioid dose by 10% to 25% over a few days to a week. If performed any faster than this, severe withdrawal symptoms can occur. Fast tapering is usually reserved for those who have been taking opioids for less than 6 months.

An unconventional method to stop opioid use is referred to as quitting “cold turkey.” The phrase means stopping opioid use altogether without lowering the dose. Long-term opioid use that is stopped suddenly can lead to severe withdrawal symptoms. This can lead to the person trying to take a higher dose to combat the symptoms, increasing the chances of an overdose. While slow and rapid tapering reduces withdrawal symptoms, they do not guarantee the person won’t experience them. However, they will be milder than quitting cold turkey.

“If you are a person taking opioids and wondering if it’s time to stop, you should ask yourself the same questions mentioned above. Think seriously about your pain levels, and how long you have been on your medication. Taking opioids long-term can not only cause stronger withdrawal symptoms when you try to stop them but also cause painful side effects. You should also consider exactly why you are taking opioids, especially if you’ve been on them for more than a month. If it’s for anything other than pain, such as to relax or feel less anxious, you are in dangerous territory and should talk to a doctor about tapering off your medication as soon as possible.

"Ultimately, you can discuss your opioid use with a doctor at any time. Every situation is different, and counsel with a medical professional should be instrumental in your decision and process in quitting opioid use,” the article continues.

A doctor should always be involved in the tapering process, but there are some ways the patient can help themselves at home. These include staying hydrated, avoiding alcohol and other substances while tapering, seeking support from friends and family, fitting relaxation time into their day, getting light exercise, and eating well-balanced meals.

ReVIDA® Recovery is a leading provider of opioid use disorder treatment in Virginia and Tennessee. Their program is flexible and offers treatment to fit a variety of schedules. Teams of case managers help with securing jobs and housing while professionals provide life-saving therapy.

To learn more about ReVIDA® Recovery, call 423-631-0432 or visit their website.


For more information about ReVIDA Recovery® Abingdon, contact the company here:

ReVIDA Recovery® Abingdon
Alesia Huffman
(276) 206-8197
300 Valley Street Northeast
Abingdon VA 24210

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