How is fentanyl addiction treated when consume?

By Craig Thompson Off

How is fentanyl addiction treated when consume?

Like other opioid addictions, medication with behavioral therapies has been shown to be effective in treating people with a fentanyl addiction.

Medications: Buprenorphine and methadone work by binding to the same opioid receptors in the brain as fentanyl, reducing cravings and withdrawal symptoms. Another medicine, naltrexone, blocks opioid receptors and prevents fentanyl from having an effect. People can discuss treatment options with their health provider.

Counseling: Behavioral therapies for addiction to opioids like fentanyl can help people modify their attitudes and behaviors related to drug use, increase healthy life skills, and help them stick with their medication. Some examples include:

  • cognitive behavioral therapy, which helps modify the patient’s drug use expectations and behaviors, and effectively manage triggers and stress
  • contingency management, which uses a voucher-based system giving patients “points” based on negative drug tests. They can use the points to earn items that encourage healthy living
  • Motivational interviewing, which is a patient-centered counseling style that addresses a patient’s mixed feelings to change

These behavioral treatment approaches have proven effective, especially when used along with medicines. Read more about drug addiction treatment in our Treatment Approaches for Drug Addiction DrugFacts.

Points to Remember

  • Fentanyl is a powerful synthetic opioid analgesic that is similar to morphine but is 50 to 100 times more potent. In its prescription form it is prescribed for pain, but fentanyl is also made illegally.
  • Fentanyl and other synthetic opioids are the most common drugs involved in overdose deaths.
  • Illegal fentanyl is sold in the following forms: as a powder, dropped on blotter paper like small candies, in eye droppers or nasal sprays, or made into pills that look like real prescription opioids.
  • Illegal fentanyl is being mixed with other drugs, such as cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, and MDMA. This is especially dangerous because people are often unaware that fentanyl has been added.
  • Fentanyl works by binding to the body’s opioid receptors, which are found in areas of the brain that control pain and emotions. Its effects include extreme happiness, drowsiness, nausea, confusion, constipation, sedation, tolerance, addiction, respiratory depression and arrest, unconsciousness, coma, and death.
  • The high potency of fentanyl greatly increases risk of overdose, especially if a person who uses drugs is unaware that a powder or pill contains it. They can underestimate the dose of opioids they are taking, resulting in overdose.
  • Naloxone is a medicine that can be given to a person to reverse a fentanyl overdose. Multiple naloxone doses might be necessary because of fentanyl’s potency.
  • Medication with behavioral therapies has been shown to be effective in treating people with an addiction to fentanyl and other opioids.