What to Know About Addiction and Treatment
Using this tramadol guide provides you with necessary information regarding uses, side effects, addiction potential, and treatment options for addiction.
When you fill a prescription, you receive a medication description sheet that details the drug’s purpose, potential side effects, and interactions to avoid. Reviewing this tramadol guide is like acquiring that consumer medication description sheet in advance. This guide will help you make a more informed decision before filling a prescription and provide additional information while using the medication.
Tramadol Guide: What is Tramadol?
Tramadol is like an opioid analgesic1. Like fentanyl, it is a synthetic opioid. It causes the brain to adjust how the body feels and reacts to pain. Tramadol also is known by its brand name Ultram®, Ultram ER®, Rizolt™, and Conzip®.
Drug Class and Schedule
Tramadol is a narcotic opioid pain medication. It is a Schedule IV2 drug of the Controlled Substances Act.
What Tramadol Treats
Physicians use tramadol primarily to treat moderately severe to severe pain.
Common street names for tramadol include Chill Pills, Ultras, and Trammies .
Research shows that while there is tramadol misuse and abuse, it is not any worse than other opioids currently. This substance is considered one of the safer opioids. That same research shows that tramadol is more likely than other opioids to result in prolonged use, misuse, or abuse. Patients have a slightly higher risk of becoming dependent on tramadol3.
Tramadol is a common pain medication used to manage pain in medical settings and post-release. It is an opioid that has become popular in recent years with individuals who want to get high.
Tramadol Guide: Is it Addictive?
As with any prescribed pain medication, particularly opioids, tramadol can be addictive if misused or if patients do not use it as prescribed by their physician.
Why Do People Abuse Tramadol?
People take tramadol for pain. They may have become tolerant to the drug and need to ingest more to achieve the benefits of the medication. Others abuse the drug to get high.
Is Tramadol Safe?
Tramadol safely treats pain when used as indicated by your physician. It is for short-term use rather than long-term as more extended use of tramadol can lead to addiction.
What Are Examples of Dangerous Drug Interactions?
Physicians prescribe tramadol for pain. When taken with certain drugs, dangerous tramadol interactions can occur. For example, interactions can trigger serotonin syndrome and seizures4. Other drugs that increase serotonin and can become hazardous to your health are:
- St. John’swort
The following MAO inhibitors are other drugs that cause dangerous tramadol interactions:
Interactions with certain drugs reduce tramadol’s effectiveness. For this reason, you should avoid taking tramadol and any of the following medications:
Avoid all interactions with tramadol and benzodiazepines. Serious side effects are possible, including slowed breathing, sudden fatigue, coma, or death.
Although tramadol can be addictive, it is an effective pain medication when taken correctly and with medical oversight.
Tramadol Guide: How is it Used?
Physicians give Tramadol for pain management. It is available in pill form, both as a capsule and tablet, with regular and extended-release. Physicians also administer tramadol in solution or liquid (drip) form.
How Is It Abused?
Is Tramadol an Opioid?
Is Tramadol a Narcotic?
Tramadol is a narcotic and controlled substance as defined by the United States Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA).
This substance is used and abused by individuals from all walks of life. Everyone, from blue-collar to executive-level individuals, can potentially abuse and become addicted to it.
Side Effects of Tramadol
Every medication has documented side effects. You may experience one or two of these tramadol side effects5, and the effects could be either short-term or long-term ones. You will experience more side effects if you are misusing the medication, allergic to it, or mixing the substance with another medicine.
The following are common short-term tramadol side effects:
While these are the most typical side effects, you may also experience constipation when you take a new medication.
Individuals who use or abuse this drug over a long period may experience the following tramadol side effects:
These effects can become permanent in some people. If you experience these conditions while or after using this substance, contact your physician as soon as possible.
You are an informed consumer when you learn about a medication’s potential side effects. The power of choice is in your hands. The option is to take the drug or ask for an alternative with fewer side effects or less serious ones.
Signs and Symptoms of Tramadol Addiction
The Dangers of Tramadol Abuse
Whether you increase the use of tramadol because you hit your tolerance level of the medication and require more to get the drug’s benefit or because you are deliberately misusing the prescription to get high, ongoing abuse of the drug is unsafe6. Tramadol abuse can result in overdose and may lead to death if mixed with other drugs or alcohol.
Tramadol Overdose Symptoms
Like other overdoses, taking too much tramadol depresses the central nervous system, often resulting in extreme lethargy, coma, or even death. Additional overdose symptoms of this drug include:
- Respiratory problems
Overdose is possible with any medication. Having this knowledge helps you avoid behavior that can result in overdose.
Tramadol Withdrawal Symptoms
Withdrawing from tramadol can cause flu-like symptoms. Additionally, as with many withdrawals of medications, you may become irritable or depressed. It is not unusual for individuals experiencing tramadol withdrawal symptoms to require medical assistance.
Knowing the dangers of this drug may keep you from misusing or abusing it. Individuals who are abusing tramadol may need treatment to help them end their addiction. Evidence-based treatment solutions are ideal.
Tramadol Addiction Treatment
If you or someone you know are struggling with tramadol addiction, you do have treatment options. Depending on where you are in the addiction timeline, your treatment will include one or more of the following:
Individuals in states of acute addiction may require a medical detox to deal with tramadol withdrawal symptoms. Medically assisted detox ensures an individual does not experience seizures, shock, coma, or death.
The next stage of tramadol treatment is rehabilitation which involves intensive, evidence-based activities to prevent any further desire for the drug.
- Inpatient :Treatment is inpatient if you have a bed and sleep there at night. The facility provides your meals, and your treatment is more intensive, with much of your time spent in treatment that includes various group activities and one-on-one therapies
- Outpatient : Treatment is of the outpatient variety does not include overnight stays. You sleep at your own home but are required to attend one-on-one and group therapy at designated times to complete your addiction treatment.
Another essential component of treatment is therapy. It is vital to get to the root cause of your addiction. Often there is an emotional need that drugs feed. Following are two of the most common therapies used to treat Tramadol addiction:
- Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) : Learning to change your thinking so you can change your behavior is an essential part of your treatment. Highly trained therapists provide CBT in one-on-one sessions and group settings to individuals addicted to tramadol in both inpatient and outpatient settings.
- Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) : Therapists often use DBT in partnership with CBT. DBT helps individuals get in touch with their emotions concerning their addiction. DBT is beneficial in preventing relapse in individuals in recovery from tramadol addiction.
Current evidence-based treatment for tramadol addiction is proven to be highly successful. While some people relapse and return to active addiction, most individuals continue in their recovery for years. Seek assistance today if you are struggling with tramadol abuse.
If you currently use Tramadol, it is recommended you keep this guide nearby. You may become dependent on the medication unintentionally. This article provides information on addiction signs and symptoms as well as when you should seek medical attention. It may come in handy when you need immediate information on tramadol, its side effects, and dangerous interactions.