Detox from codeine and other opiates in beautiful south Florida!
At Compass Detox, South Florida’s premier detox facility, codeine addiction is something that we’ve helped people break free from many times. The dangers and discomfort that come along with codeine addiction and withdrawal can be challenging to overcome on your own. But here at Compass Detox, you will be surrounded by support and provided with a firm foundation of medical and therapeutic solutions from a team of professionals that leads this industry.
Unfortunately, addiction is a common result of taking opiates and especially true with codeine, even when prescribed as a medication by a doctor and not the result of substance abuse. Codeine addiction almost always requires a medical detox program to overcome both the short-term withdrawal symptoms and long-term psychological effects. At Compass Detox, our codeine detox program always begins with an evaluation to find the safest path possible towards your sobriety. We treat mind, body, and spirit to set you on the right path.
Are you or a loved one struggling with codeine or opiate addiction and in need of detoxification? Compass Detox, a codeine detox facility in Florida can help! Contact us today for your risk-free consultation and find out how we can help you begin your journey to recovery.
Understanding Codeine Addiction, Withdrawal & Detox
What is Codeine?
According to the National Library of Medicine, codeine treats pain, cough, and diarrhea, but its most common use is for the treatment of mild to moderate cough and pain. Codeine is a prescription medication with legitimate uses, but it does have the potential to be abused. In fact, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) labels Tylenol/codeine mixtures as a Schedule III Controlled Substance, meaning they carry up to moderate potential for abuse. Codeine cough syrup falls under the category of a Schedule V Controlled Substance, meaning it has a lower potential for abuse, but people may still misuse cough syrups.
Codeine can be misused, and over time, misuse can lead to addiction. Codeine also has some unpleasant side effects, and in large doses, codeine can lead to overdose. Codeine use can be safe when people take it as prescribed, but abusing the drug can have serious consequences, and some people may need treatment to recover from codeine & other opiate addictions.
What Does Codeine Do?
Codeine is an opioid drug, which means that it binds to opiate receptors in the nervous system to create pain-relieving and cough-reducing effects. Codeine’s status as an opioid places it in the same category as drugs like morphine, hydrocodone, and oxycodone. When people take codeine as prescribed or intended, it provides pain relief and reduces cough.
On the other hand, the National Institutes of Health reports that large doses of codeine can cause people to feel high, just like when they abuse other opiate drugs. A high from codeine can cause users to feel “good” or experience feelings of calmness.
Codeine Side Effects
Despite being a medication, codeine can have some unpleasant side effects. The U.S. National Library of Medicine reports that common codeine side effects include headache, stomach pain, and difficulty urinating.
In serious cases, codeine may cause the following severe side effects:
- Nausea and Vomiting
- Rapid Heart Rate
- Codeine Overdose
In addition to some rather unpleasant side effects, large doses of codeine can cause an overdose. Medical experts report that overdose is more likely when people mix codeine with alcohol. Combining codeine with other prescription medications, such as benzodiazepines, sedatives, and muscle relaxers, can also increase codeine overdose risk.
Some symptoms of a codeine overdose include the following:
- Extreme Drowsiness
- Trouble Breathing
- Cold, Clammy Skin
- Dizziness and Fainting
- Slow Heart Rate
In cases of codeine overdose, emergency medical treatment is necessary. The drug naloxone can reverse a codeine overdose by blocking its opiate effects.
Is Codeine Addictive?
As previously noted, the DEA schedules codeine as a controlled substance, meaning there is some potential for abuse, especially among Tylenol/codeine combinations, which are in a stricter scheduling category as compared to codeine cough syrup.
The DEA labels codeine as having a potential for abuse, so scientists have carried out research to determine just how addictive and dangerous codeine is. A 2013 study in the journal Addictive Behaviors assessed codeine use among college students and found that 6.5 percent of the 2,349 students in the study had ever used codeine. In addition to this finding, the study revealed that most codeine users abused multiple substances. For example, all of them reported using alcohol within the past month, and 10.7 percent stated they also used marijuana.
College students are not the only population that may abuse codeine. In fact, a study in a 2013 publication of the medical journal PLOS ONE found that 6.8 percent of people who were taking codeine to relieve pain were abusing it, and 17.8 percent of them were dependent upon the drug. Codeine may therefore become addictive with both recreational and medical use, and the U.S. National Library of Medicine has warned that codeine can become habit-forming, especially among those who abuse alcohol, street drugs, or other prescription medications.
Street Names of Codeine
Given the fact that codeine can be abused, people may use street names to conceal their codeine use. A common name for codeine among party-goers and recreational drug users is “purple drank,” which originated in the rap music scene. This term is used to describe a formulation containing codeine cough syrup and alcohol, or codeine combined with a soft drink mixed with candy. Research in the journal Addictive Behaviors shows that people may also refer to this formulation as syrup, sizzurp, barre, or lean.
According to the National Institutes of Health, some other street names for codeine include:
- Captain Cody
People may also refer to codeine cough syrup formulations as “Doors and Fours,” or “Pancakes and Syrup.”
How is Codeine Used?
People may use codeine by simply drinking large quantities of codeine cough syrup to achieve a high. In addition, as discussed previously, recreational users may make codeine cough syrup into “purple drank” by mixing it with alcohol or soft drinks. The combination of codeine and alcohol is particularly dangerous, as the user experiences not only the effects of codeine but also the intoxicating effects of alcohol. This can lead to overdose.
Beyond using codeine cough syrup, some people may abuse codeine pills. They may take larger quantities of a codeine prescription than a doctor intends them to take, or they may buy pills from street-level drug dealers. In some cases, people may take codeine pills by mouth. Others may crush codeine pills and snort them through the nose with a straw to feel high.
Long-Term Effects of Codeine Abuse
According to the National Institutes of Health, experts do not know all of the long-term effects of codeine cough syrup; however, what is known is that people who use large amounts of codeine will become tolerant over time, meaning they need larger doses to achieve the same pleasurable effects associated with codeine. This leads to dependence, meaning the body cannot function normally without codeine. This is when an addiction develops.
When people become addicted to codeine, they can experience undesirable physical and psychological symptoms.
According to the study in PLOS ONE, long-term codeine abuse can cause the following side effects:
- Stomach Ache
- Attention Problems
- Signs of Codeine Addiction
Codeine abuse comes with negative side effects, including addiction. Once someone develops an addiction, a treatment specialist will use the term “opioid use disorder” to diagnose and describe the addiction.
Some diagnostic criteria for a codeine addiction include:
- Taking larger doses of codeine than intended
- Difficulty stopping or reducing codeine use
- Using codeine even when it is dangerous
- Continuing codeine use even when it causes relationship problems
- Ongoing codeine use despite psychological or physical health problems resulting from the drug
- Giving up important activities to use codeine
- Difficulty performing duties at home or work because of codeine use
- Spending a great deal of time using or obtaining codeine
For example, someone who has an opioid use disorder involving codeine may want to stop using but find that it is impossible to do so. He or she may have arguments with a spouse or significant other about drug use, but continue to use codeine. In addition, someone who has developed an opioid use disorder may begin skipping work to use codeine or may give up hobbies such as exercising. Another sign may be using large amounts of codeine before driving, which can be hazardous to themselves and others.
Codeine Withdrawal and Detox
When someone becomes addicted to codeine and develops an opioid use disorder, the person is likely to experience unpleasant withdrawal symptoms when he or she stops using the drug. Codeine is an opiate drug, so codeine withdrawal symptoms tend to represent those seen with other drugs in this class.
The World Health Organization reports that the following withdrawal symptoms occur when someone stops using opiates:
- Difficulty Sleeping
- Hot and Cold Flashes
- Muscular Cramps
- Running Nose and Eyes
- Nausea and Vomiting
People who are detoxing from codeine will experience the codeine withdrawal timeline. Codeine is a short-acting opiate, as it has a half-life of just three hours. This means that a person will begin to experience withdrawal symptoms within eight hours to a day after stopping codeine use. These unpleasant symptoms can last from four to ten days.
To manage codeine withdrawal symptoms, it is often necessary for people to participate in a professional detox program. People often undergo detox in an inpatient setting, where medical staff can monitor symptoms and treat them as needed. For moderate to severe codeine withdrawal, a doctor may prescribe a medication like buprenorphine or methadone. These two drugs can ease codeine withdrawal by alleviating symptoms and reducing drug cravings.
Treatment for Codeine Addiction at Compass Detox in Florida
A professional codeine detox program like Compass Detox can provide relief from unpleasant codeine withdrawal symptoms and make it possible for people to cope with withdrawal, but detox is only the first step in treatment for codeine addiction. To address the underlying problems that contributed to codeine addiction, people must engage in some sort of behavioral or psychological treatment. Sometimes, people may continue to take medications administered during detox as part of their ongoing treatment. These medications can help to control cravings as people recover from codeine addiction.
Behavioral treatment for codeine addiction may include cognitive-behavioral therapy, which helps people to learn new ways of coping and thinking about drugs. This form of therapy can also help people to identify healthier ways of managing stress. Ongoing treatment can occur on an inpatient, intensive outpatient or outpatient basis.
It may also include group therapy, where people can develop communication skills and learn from others who are also struggling with addiction. Relapse prevention programs may also be a part of recovery from codeine addiction. These programs can help people identify triggers for relapse and learn ways to cope with codeine cravings.
Help With Detoxing From Codeine
Give yourself or your loved one the best chance at getting sober safely and staying sober by admitting to our Florida codeine detox center. Get help from the caring and experienced medical staff at Compass Detox.
FAQs About Codeine Addiction & Withdrawal
Codeine Withdrawal Information
Beyond the information covered previously, people may have some additional frequently asked questions about codeine:
Is codeine safe?
When taken as prescribed by a doctor, codeine can safely treat pain or provide temporary relief from a bad cough. On the other hand, people who mix codeine with alcohol or other drugs are at an increased risk of overdose, which can cause life-threatening breathing problems.
What does codeine look like?
Codeine can have various appearances. For example, a Tylenol with codeine formulation is available in pill form and may look like any other pain-reliever. Codeine is also available in cough syrups, which are typically thick, dark red liquids. People may pour codeine cough syrups into cups and mix it with alcohol or soft drinks at parties, nightclubs, or concerts.
How long does it take to detox from codeine?
Codeine withdrawal symptoms tend to last about a week, but detox may last from four to 10 days, depending on the severity of a person’s codeine addiction.
How do I get off of codeine?
If you find that you have developed an addiction to codeine, it may be difficult to stop using it on your own. Your body may be dependent upon the drug, meaning that you are likely to experience painful withdrawal symptoms if you stop using it. If you’d like to get off of codeine, it is important to reach out to a doctor or an addiction treatment professional to begin a detox program, which will help you to stay as comfortable as possible as your body rids itself of codeine. Next, it is important to complete psychological treatment for codeine addiction.
Does everyone who uses codeine become addicted?
The answer to this question is no. People can take codeine under the care of a doctor and never become addicted. Some people may occasionally use codeine cough syrup during a bad case of the cold or flu, and others may take it for pain and experience no lasting consequences.
On the other hand, high doses of codeine can lead to addiction, especially with long-term use or abuse. You can avoid a codeine addiction by taking the drug exactly as prescribed. Never take more codeine than a doctor has prescribed, and never use it illegally or recreationally. Never take it with other drugs, since mixing codeine with alcohol or other sedatives can cause a fatal overdose.
Codeine is a prescription drug, and some people may truly need this medication. On the other hand, some people may abuse the drug and think that it is harmless because it is a medication. This is simply not the case. Taking large doses of codeine or mixing it with other substances can be deadly. While the practice of combining codeine cough syrup and alcohol to make “purple drank” may be popular among the music and club scene, this practice is also dangerous. It is never safe to abuse codeine in this fashion or to take codeine that was not prescribed to you.
If you have been abusing codeine and find that you are unable to stop on your own, you may have developed a codeine addiction. In this case, it is important to reach out to a professional treatment program for assistance so that you can avoid the negative consequences associated with codeine abuse. With treatment, you can recover and learn to live a life that is free from the grips of codeine addiction.
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