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10 Alternatives to Prescription Drugs for Opioid Withdrawal

10 Alternatives to Prescription Drugs for Opioid Withdrawal

Opiate withdrawal is a mental and physical struggle, and nobody experiences it the same way. While there are prescription medications to deal with the side effects, not everyone can or wants to go down that road, especially if dealing with more than just the addiction itself. These are some tips and tricks that have made their rounds and are considered decent alternatives to the widely used prescription drugs that fight withdrawal symptoms.

1. Stay Hydrated

Drink plenty of water to cleanse the liver and kidneys naturally.[1] Water detoxifies and hydrates, and sports drinks like Gatorade help with dehydration as well. Staying sufficiently hydrated helps the body to heal the way that it is supposed to, rather than pulling resources from already strained organs. Simply aim for the daily recommended amount of water consumption per day.

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2. Over-the-Counter Products

Over-the-counter products can provide effective opiate withdrawal relief effectively. Those that will work include ibuprofen for aching in the body and muscles, Benadryl will aid in relief of watery eyes and itching, and Immodium to help prevent frequent visits to the bathroom. All of these products are safe to use when the instructions are followed, and can really curb some of the withdrawal symptoms.

3. Get Lost in a Book, Movie, or Show

Really, the trick here is to find an alternative to obsessively (not really) think about. There are so many ways to get caught up in any form of media, and the time will just fly by. This is especially great on days that you are not feeling up to tackling the outside world, like if you are recovering but also pregnant[2]—as opiate treatment is more complicated for those who are expecting.

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4. Take Advantage of Water

There’s no doubt aches are a serious sign of withdrawal, so use something that is at your fingertips all day at any time. A hot shower can give immediate relief from anxiety, tension, headaches, muscles spasms, and more. Simply being in water like swimming, can improve your mood immensely and provide therapeutic relief for the body.

5. Change Your Diet

Health is usually neglected when using opiates, so many people dealing with withdrawal also need to look at their diet. An appetite may not be present, but light and healthy meals will be easily digested to provide energy and nutrients to help the body heal. Soups are great for those with a low appetite, as well as vegetables, fruits, crackers, and eggs. Junk food should be avoided.

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6. Go Outside, Take a Walk

The sun is necessary for most living things to thrive, this is why it is important for those who are dealing with opioid withdrawal symptoms—the sun helps to get you feeling better faster. The shining sun will help to produce serotonin, the neurotransmitter that plays a vital role in both sleep and mood. The sun is also an important source of vitamin D, and a lack of vitamin D can lead to depression.

7. Alternate Heat and Cold

Withdrawal symptoms include rapidly changing from having the chills to sweating, so you will need a cold compress as well as a heating pat to help cope with these quick changes. A moderately warm heating pad will do, as will a cool wash rag.

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8. Get Plenty of Sleep

When you are initially detoxing, plan to sleep a lot. This will allow the body to heal much more and deal with less pain. Sleep lends itself to healing[3] and not hurting. Just like when you exercise, the body heals while you’re sleeping, not while it is being stressed. It has the chance to rebuild and be stronger than it was.

9. Exercise Daily

Exercise will be hard when first detoxing, but once you are feeling better, light exercises are ideal. This can be simply walking or a light jog to reduce stress and aid the body to heal. The blood will start circulating and help to heal.

10. Find Peace and Quiet

Withdrawal is frustrating and challenging as there will be feelings of being uncomfortable, soreness, fatigue, and uneasiness. The last thing needed is unnecessary noise. Let anyone close to you know that you need peace and your own time when dealing with the withdrawal symptoms.

Reference

[1] http://www.liversupport.com/for-your-livers-sake-the-best-times-to-drink-water/
[2] https://www.safeharbourrecovery.com/opiate-addiction-and-pregnancy/
[3] http://greatist.com/fitness/18-scientifically-proven-ways-speed-recovery

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Last Updated on March 13, 2019

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

1. Work on the small tasks.

When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

2. Take a break from your work desk.

Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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3. Upgrade yourself

Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

4. Talk to a friend.

Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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6. Paint a vision to work towards.

If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

7. Read a book (or blog).

The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

8. Have a quick nap.

If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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9. Remember why you are doing this.

Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

10. Find some competition.

Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

11. Go exercise.

Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

12. Take a good break.

Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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