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How to Help an Ultram Addict

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Substance abuse problems have the potential to negatively affect individuals, their families, and society as a whole.  As addiction progresses, the sufferer’s obsession with his preferred substance tends to outweigh his concern for the consequences of his choices – leading to erratic and risky behaviors.

Saddled with the weight of substance abuse and dependency, personal relationships will usually suffer. Further, addiction affects one’s ability to obtain and maintain employment, decreasing the ability to have a positive influence on society. Fortunately, treatment for addiction does work. We’ve compiled some information below for you to learn about Ultram, as well as different recovery options for those struggling with abuse of the drug.

Help for Ultram Addicts

Ultram (generic name: tramadol) is a pain medication with relatively low potential for abuse and addiction if used as prescribed, and on a short-term basis.  Ultram is a member of the opioid family of pain-relievers. It acts, in part, by binding to central nervous system opiate receptors to alter the perception of pain in the brain.

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Ultram is used in the management of:

  • Moderate to severe pain.
  • Pain associated with fibromyalgia.
  • Migraine headaches.
  • Multiple sclerosis.

Unfortunately, when used long-term, the body will began to develop a tolerance for the medication.

What this means is that the body gets used to the substance and requires more and more to feel the initial effects. Additionally, over time, continued increased dosage can lead to addiction and the risk of overdose.

Patients who’ve developed a dependence to Ultram may experience significantly uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms when they attempt to cut off use, so quitting can be difficult to do alone.

Treatment for addiction to Ultram and other opiates can help the user recover and may include one or more of the following:

  • Ultram detox.
  • Outpatient recovery options, including partial hospitalization or intensive outpatient treatment.
  • Inpatient or residential treatment.
  • Ongoing addiction therapy / counseling.
  • Longitudinal aftercare options, including therapeutic community living, or sober-living facilities.
  • 12-Step recovery programs.

Don’t let addiction to Ultram steal another day from you or someone you love. Call  to discuss treatment with a support specialist now.

Is Ultram Addictive?

Yes. Ultram can be addictive. Generally, if it taken as directed it is thought to have a low potential for abuse; however, incidence of Ultram abuse is higher than originally suspected, and cessation of use tends to produce withdrawal symptoms that indicate its addictive potential.

Additionally, as mentioned above, the user can develop a tolerance for this opiate and consistently require increasing amounts for the same effects. This process of tolerance is a hallmark of an addictive substance and leads to the significant risk of tramadol overdose and even death.

tramadol pills and drink

There are several considerations patients and their physicians should evaluate before prescribing Ultram. For instance, he following patients should not take Ultram:

  • Those with a history of addiction.
  • Those with suicidal tendencies.
  • Those taking any substances that depress the central nervous system, such as alcohol.

According to the CDC, in 2010 alcohol played a role in 18.5% of the emergency room visits and deaths that involved opioids.

In 2014, due to the increasing number of opioid related emergency room incidents and reports of abuse, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) changed Ultram’s classification to a controlled substance.  Therefore, it is now subject to stricter regulation.

What are the Signs of Ultram Addiction?

There are many signs to watch for when you suspect that a loved one may be abusing Ultram. These generally fall into 2 categories: physical signs and psychological signs.

Physical Signs and Symptoms

  • Numbness.
  • Tingling.
  • Shakes and tremors.
  • Restlessness.
  • Painful muscle contractions.
  • Headaches.
  • Chest pains and palpitations.
  • Seizures.
  • Gastrointestinal distress.

Psychological Signs and Symptoms

  • Hallucinations.
  • Paranoia.
  • Extreme anxiety.
  • Panic attacks.
  • Confusion.
  • Aggressiveness.
  • Agitation.
  • Depression.

Am I addicted to Ultram?

You may be addicted to Ultram if you:

  • Increase dosage without consulting a physician.
  • Use Ultram more frequently than the physician prescribed.
  • Have overwhelming urges to use Ultram.
  • Interest in taking the drug supersedes that of spending time with family and friends.

Another clear sign that you may have a problem with your Ultram use is developing certain symptoms of withdrawal when you are unable to take the drug. These symptoms include:

  • Depression.
  • Aggressiveness.
  • Headaches.
  • Hallucinations.

Ultram Treatment

Inpatient Treatment and Supervised Detox

Ultram detoxification should occur in a facility that has been specifically designed for that purpose and in the presence of a highly trained team of professionals. Withdrawal symptoms can be extremely uncomfortable and can sometimes cause the user to return to the drug to seek relief from these symptoms, especially if they persist. Supervised detox can help ease the symptoms and ensure that all medical issues are addressed.

No one treatment is right for everyone, therefore, the team will work together to design a program that is tailored to each individual.  After completion of the initial detox period, most programs employ a combination of behavioral treatments, education and support group participation listed below:

therapeutic reassurance
  • Individual counseling.
  • Family and group counseling.
  • Mandatory drug screening.
  • Skills training.
  • Relapse prevention education.
  • Dual diagnosis treatment.
  • Contingency management interventions (reward-based incentives for treatment).
  • 12-Step Programs.

Outpatient Treatment

If you are unable to commit to inpatient treatment, outpatient treatment may be a good option.

Outpatient care typically includes many of the same elements that a residential program may include with the benefit of being able to continue living at home.

If you think you may have a problem with Ultram, it’s time to get help. Call to confidentially discuss treatment with a support specialist today and begin the process of your recovery.

Call Our Hotline Today

It can be very difficult for someone who’s developed an addiction to Ultram to quit on their own. Fortunately, many treatment options exist for those looking for support to stop.

If you or someone you know is suffering the effects of Ultram abuse, don’t let another day pass without getting help. Call  to speak to someone about finding the right type of rehab care for you.

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Amanda Lautieri is a Senior Web Content Editor at American Addiction Centers and an addiction content expert for DrugAbuse.com. She holds a bachelor's degree and has reviewed thousands of medical articles on substance abuse and addiction.
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