Fentanyl addiction is terrifying, but you don’t have to face it alone. At Beach House Center for Recovery, our caring team of addiction specialists, medical clinicians, and psychiatric providers offers compassionate, innovative, and science-backed treatment plans. We will help you break free from addiction.

Fentanyl addiction is a national health concern. Illicit use of this highly dangerous prescription drug has racked up an alarming death toll throughout the United States. Although fentanyl continues to be prescribed in legitimate pharmaceutical varieties for pain management, illicit versions fuel an epidemic of mental illness, crime, overdoses, and death.

A major part of the problem lies in fentanyl’s chemical composition, which lends itself to easy reproduction by street traffickers. The drug is typically combined with other popular drugs and common household ingredients to make the mixture cost-effective.

What is Fentanyl?

Fentanyl is a powerful synthetic opioid drug approximately 100 times stronger than morphine. It is usually only prescribed to treat the pain from advanced cancer, but it can also be obtained illegally.

Is Fentanyl Addictive?

Due to its potency, fentanyl is highly addictive and can easily lead to abuse and overdose.

Fentanyl works by binding to opioid receptors in the brain, which causes pain relief and a feeling of euphoria. However, it also affects the brain’s reward system, causing a dopamine surge and intense pleasure. The release of elevated dopamine levels can lead to compulsive use to replicate the pleasurable effects.

What are the side effects of fentanyl?

Fentanyl is an incredibly potent and dangerous drug linked to thousands of overdose deaths across the United States.

While fentanyl’s side effects are similar to other opioids, its potency makes it more lethal. Fentanyl side effects include the following:

  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Constipation
  • Dry mouth
  • Heart palpitations
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Sleep apnea
  • Fatigue

Additionally, fentanyl can also cause psychological side effects, such as depression, anxiety, and paranoia. It can also lead to decreased cognitive functioning; confusion, memory problems, and difficulty concentrating are highly common. Some people may also experience hallucinations and delusions.

What are Fentanyl Addiction Symptoms?

Fentanyl abuse symptoms can be difficult to detect; most people progress to fentanyl after becoming addicted to other substances. However, fentanyl abuse symptoms are similar to heroin or other opioids. Here are five common symptoms of fentanyl addiction:

  • Increased tolerance for the drug: When someone becomes addicted to fentanyl, they require increasingly larger doses to get the same effect.
  • Withdrawal symptoms: When the drug is not taken for an extended period, the user will experience extreme physical and emotional distress, including anxiety, depression, and intense cravings.
  • Inability to control drug use: Fentanyl users may find it increasingly difficult to manage or reduce their usage, even when aware of the dangers.
  • Uncontrollable cravings: People addicted to fentanyl may experience intense cravings that can lead them to use the drug, even in dangerous situations.
  • Changes in behavior: People addicted to fentanyl may become isolated, neglectful, and careless. They may also engage in reckless behavior, such as driving under the influence or drug use in public.

What are the Effects of Fentanyl Abuse?

Fentanyl abuse has a number of adverse effects on the fentanyl user and their loved ones. Physically, fentanyl can cause dangerous side effects such as a slowed heart rate, respiratory depression, sedation, and even coma. There is also an extremely high risk of a fentanyl overdose, which can be life-threatening.

Psychologically, fentanyl abuse can lead to persistent depression, anxiety, paranoia, and suicidal thoughts.

Fentanyl abuse also has a number of social consequences. Long-term opioid use disorder can damage once-close relationships, lead to financial problems, and cause legal issues. People who misuse fentanyl are at an increased risk of infectious diseases. While transmission of viral infections like HIV and Hepatitis C is common among intravenous drug users due to sharing needles with other users, severe bacterial infections are becoming prevalent.

Beach House Center for Recovery: Fentanyl Addiction Treatment

Fentanyl treatment is available in a wide variety of options, all appropriate for users in different stages of the addiction and withdrawal process. These include:

  • Intensive inpatient treatment – This popular treatment protocol involves clients living at a designated residential facility, anywhere from three to eight weeks. This phase involves medically assisted detox.
  • Partial Hospitalization Outpatient treatment (PHP) – This less intensive treatment protocol involves clients attending a designated treatment facility on a non-residential basis for sessions six times per week.

No one should have to face addiction alone. Addiction can be a difficult and isolating experience, and it is important to remember that help is available.

Our guiding principles at Beach House Center for Recovery are love and connection. We are a community of addiction care specialists dedicated to providing a safe space for healing and recovery. With science-backed interventions, including Medication-Assisted Treatment, and innovative therapies, we can help you overcome your addiction.

To learn more about our fentanyl addiction treatment approach, please get in touch with our helpful admissions counselor today.