When it comes to drug abuse, fentanyl is one of the most dangerous drugs on the market. This powerful opioid can be deadly, and it’s essential to know how it affects the body and how long it stays in your system. If you have a loved one or yourself who may be using fentanyl, knowing how long it stays in your system can help you understand the risks and when to expect withdrawal symptoms.
In this blog post, we will discuss what fentanyl is, how it works, and how long fentanyl will stay in your system.
What Is Fentanyl?
Fentanyl is a potent synthetic opioid that can be up to one hundred times more potent than morphine. It is used in hospital settings to treat severe pain and is sometimes prescribed to people on a long-term basis.
Pharmaceutical fentanyl is usually prescribed as lozenges, patches, and tablets but can also be made illegally in clandestine laboratories. In its illicit form, fentanyl is typically sold as a powder or on blotter paper. It has also been found in counterfeit pills disguised as other drugs such as Vicodin or OxyContin.
Fentanyl is one of the most misused substances, leading to an epidemic of overdoses throughout the country.
How Does Fentanyl Work?
Fentanyl is a man-made opioid with similar effects to morphine, but it is more potent and works faster. It works by interacting with several of the body’s naturally-occurring opioid neurotransmitters.
When taken, it quickly binds to specific brain receptors responsible for pain relief and emotions, stimulating them to produce euphoria and relaxation. Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that works by interacting with opioid receptors found on some nerve cells.
Since fentanyl is so potent, it produces these effects at much higher levels than naturally-occurring opioids, leading to its potential for abuse and addiction when used without medical supervision or as prescribed.
Side effects of fentanyl include:
- Shallow breathing
Those who have an addiction to fentanyl can experience fentanyl withdrawal symptoms, such as:
- Muscle aches
- Excessive sweating
- Respiratory depression
- Respiratory arrest
- Dilated pupils
- Fast heart rate
The symptoms depend on the individual and the amount of fentanyl they take, but they typically begin after roughly 24 hours and can last for days or weeks.
Fentanyl Stay in Your System Affects your Body and Mind
An addiction to fentanyl can significantly affect your body and mind. Drug tests are often used to detect the presence of opioids in a person’s system.
How long fentanyl stays in a person’s system depends on several factors, such as:
- Weight, body mass, and body fat percentage
- Kidney and liver function
- Frequency of drug use
Fentanyl can be detected in a drug test. Fentanyl stay in urine, blood, hair, and saliva tests, depends on the type of drug testing.
Below are the drug tests that can be used to detect fentanyl:
- Urine tests: A urine test for fentanyl can remain positive between 24 to 72 hours after the last use. Chronic users may have positive results for up to seven days.
- Blood tests: A blood test can detect fentanyl depending on the dose and individual metabolism. This drug test for fentanyl typically can detect anywhere from 5 to 24 hours after the last dose.
- Hair tests: A hair test can detect past fentanyl and current fentanyl as well as other synthetic opioids usage up to 90 days after the last instances of use.
While saliva drug testing can be used for other drugs, it is unreliable for detecting fentanyl.
Illicit fentanyl and other opioids can severely impact your physical and mental health. Not only does it come with the risk of addiction from prolonged use, but an overdose can cause a fatality.
Fentanyl unwanted side effects such:
- Sleep disturbances
- Sexual dysfunction
Fentanyl can also cause more severe long-term issues, such as respiratory depression, liver damage, and heart problems.
Family members and other loved ones of someone with addiction to fentanyl may also experience various emotions and difficulties, from worry and guilt to financial strain.
Signs That You or Your Loved One Is Struggling with Addiction
Fentanyl use is often difficult to detect, but certain signs can help you or your loved one identify if someone is struggling with an addiction to fentanyl. These include:
- Loss of interest in activities and hobbies: Substance use can lead to a lack of motivation and drive, causing people to lose interest in their regular activities and hobbies.
- Isolation from family and friends: Someone addicted to fentanyl may try to distance themselves from their loved ones to hide their addiction.
- Financial problems: Struggling with opioid addiction can lead to economic strain, as someone may be spending significant amounts of money on drugs.
- Mood swings and anxiety: Addiction can cause severe mood swings and heightened levels of anxiety due to intense withdrawal symptoms.
If you or your loved one is struggling with opioid addiction, it’s important to reach out for help from specialists who can provide the necessary support and resources. Overdose can lead to death, so it’s important to seek help as soon as possible.
La Hacienda Addiction Treatment Programs
La Hacienda’s addiction treatment program addresses substance use including highly addictive synthetic opioid drugs such as prescription drug fentanyl or illicit fentanyl.
Withdrawal symptoms from fentanyl can be intense and uncomfortable, and medical care may be necessary to ensure a safe detox process.
Our doctors and nurses understand fentanyl withdrawal symptoms. The addiction treatment detoxification facility is designed to help manage withdrawal symptoms and help patients recover from fentanyl and other opioid abuse.
Mental health disorders, co-occurring disorders, and chronic pain are addressed at La Hacienda. Each patient is treated with dignity as the medical and clinical staff decide the best treatment and therapy strategies.
Residential addiction treatment plans typically involve both traditional and alternative therapies, such as:
- Counseling and Behavioral Therapy: Therapy can help individuals identify triggers and coping strategies to reduce the risk of relapse. La Hacienda offer a range of behavioral therapies, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), and physical medicine.
- Twelve-Step Approach: Counselors at La Hacienda instruct how the twelve steps can help someone address the obsession and compulsion for drugs such as oral fentanyl, transdermal fentanyl and even the fentanyl patch.
- Group Therapy: Group therapy helps individuals in recovery build positive relationships with their peers and use the group’s support network for motivation. It is often used in combination with other types of therapies. We also offer family therapy for those patients who choose to participate.
- Alumni: La Hacienda has a very strong alumni system to support patients when they go back to living in communities following treatment.
La Hacienda Can Help with Fentanyl Addiction
For those dealing with fentanyl addiction, finding help and support on the journey to recovery can be daunting.
La Hacienda Treatment Center offers detoxification and residential programs to help people with these addictions safely manage withdrawal symptoms and recover from abuse of opioid drugs. Qualified and experienced specialists ensure that treatment plans are tailored to the patient’s needs.
Individuals and families experiencing the effects of fentanyl abuse and addiction can call La Hacienda for help.
Our trained, on-campus admission professionals answer calls and perform an intake process prior to patients coming to La Hacienda. They understand opioid dependence and want to help find the right solution for each person’s circumstance.
We are in network with many major insurance providers and our staff work to see that each patient receives the maximum benefit from their coverage.