Abusing tramadol is dangerous, putting you at risk of addiction, serotonin syndrome, and potentially fatal overdose. However, effective substance abuse treatment can support you to leave tramadol behind and reclaim a healthy, sober life.
Tramadol is an opioid painkiller that doctors prescribe to treat moderate to moderately severe pain. Scientists first synthesized tramadol in 1962, and it went on sale in 1977. Doctors usually prescribe tramadol in pills or capsules.
Some people abuse tramadol to experience a euphoric high. It may also help improve performance in sports such as cycling. People abusing tramadol may crush pills into a powder and snort it to increase the intensity of the high.
While tramadol is less potent than other opioids (such as heroin), it is still an addictive substance. The United States classifies tramadol as a schedule IV controlled substance, meaning that while it has medical uses, it is illegal to obtain without a prescription. Despite this, over 1.6 million people reported past-year misuse of tramadol from 2015 to 2017.
Like other opioid drugs, tramadol works by binding to opioid receptors in the brain and other parts of the body, blocking chemical pain messengers and relieving pain. It also inhibits the reuptake of the chemical messengers norepinephrine and serotonin – hormones that regulate mood, respiration, and other essential functions. These chemicals have anti-depressant and anti-anxiety properties, producing feelings of relaxation and euphoria in the user.
Snorting tramadol can cause a variety of short-term effects. It can make you feel:
However, it also comes with a collection of undesirable or dangerous side effects, such as:
More severe side effects of snorting tramadol include:
Snorting tramadol puts you at risk of several serious medical complications – tramadol overdose, serotonin syndrome, and tramadol addiction.
If you take more tramadol than your body can metabolize, you may experience tramadol overdose. Opioids like tramadol affect areas of the brain responsible for breathing and respiration. If you take too much, your breathing can slow to dangerous levels.
Mixing tramadol with alcohol increases the risk of overdose.
Tramadol overdose is a medical emergency and can be fatal without urgent medical attention. If you think someone may have overdosed on tramadol, call 911 immediately.
Symptoms of tramadol overdose include:
Tramadol abuse has been linked to serotonin syndrome, a severe condition where serotonin receptors are overstimulated. Serotonin syndrome is potentially life-threatening without medical attention. Symptoms of serotonin syndrome include:
If you take tramadol in a way other than what your doctor prescribes, you risk developing tramadol addiction. Addiction is when you compulsively seek or use a substance despite adverse consequences. It is characterized by physical changes in the brain that can make it very difficult to stop using the substance.
Addiction is a severe condition that can have devesting effects on your health, work, and family life. Common signs and symptoms of addiction include:
While tramadol addiction can be scary, there is help available. Addiction treatment programs can support users to overcome their addiction and live a productive and fulfilling sober life.
If you repeatedly snort tramadol over some time, you may develop a physical dependence on tramadol. Physical dependence happens when your body gets used to the presence of the substance in your body and begins to adjust its functions in response. You start to rely on tramadol to feel normal.
If you suddenly stop taking tramadol, you may experience withdrawal symptoms as your body readjusts. Tramadol withdrawal symptoms can be physical and psychological and may include:
Because of the potential severity of withdrawal symptoms, you should seek professional medical advice before withdrawing from tramadol. Medical detox can support you to quit tramadol safely, treating withdrawal symptoms and helping to manage cravings.
Tramadol comes with several other physical health risks for specific groups.
Addiction is a complex disease – but it is treatable. With the proper support, you can overcome addiction and maintain long-term abstinence.
There are many different treatment approaches for substance addiction and treatment centers tend to offer various options. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, effective substance abuse treatment should:
After decades of scientific research, there is now a range of evidence-based treatment options available for addiction. Treatment programs may include:
Remember that no single treatment works for everyone, and you may need to try various options before finding the right option for you.
Empowered Recovery is an expert-led, family-orientated addiction treatment center in Georgia. We offer a safe environment for clients to heal mentally, physically, and emotionally. Our holistic approach empowers each client with the skills they need to overcome addiction, develop life skills, and reclaim their future.
We combine clinical excellence with integrity, honesty, and compassion to help clients reach their full potential. We continually pursue the highest caliber of medical staff, many of whom have first-hand experience in addiction recovery. Our programs treat the entire person – not just the addiction – addressing any underlying mental health issues driving substance abuse.
Alongside our clinical team, our case managers work with clients to develop life skills that prepare them for sober life and help rebuild their self-esteem. We encourage clients to have fun in early recovery and rediscover their hobbies and passions. We offer a year’s additional recovery coaching to support clients through any challenges and difficulties they may face.
If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, contact us today. We’re here for you.
Contact our team to find out how we can help you