It is unbelievable to me that many people do not even realize that Ultram abuse is possible, nor do they believe it has any addictive potential whatsoever to it. There are even doctor out there who believe it to be completely safe in terms of being non-addictive.
After working in a drug rehab center for over 5 years now, I can definitely say that Ultram and Tramadol have definite addictive potential. Just because the medication is a synthetic opiate and not a “real” opiate like Vicodin does not mean that you can not become addicted to it. This is evidenced by the fact that dozens of clients who have come into treatment and into detox have done so for the sole purpose of getting off of Ultram. It is their only drug of choice, and they are not abusing or even using any other drugs of any kind, including alcohol. They just need to get off of Tramadol. That’s it.
So after you see a number of desperate addicts come into detox who are struggling with Ultram addiction, you begin to realize that there is definitely something to it. They have the same withdrawal symptoms that other opiate and heroin addicts seem to display: runny nose, upset stomach, restlessness, night sweats and chills, and so on.
After seeing evidence like this build up over the years that people can and do get addicted to this medication, it blows me away that many patients and doctors continue to believe that the medication is non-addictive. I believe the warning label on bottles of Ultram at one time read “Not addictive but may be habit forming.” Huh? If you have a habit of taking drugs then that is a form of addiction, people! Don’t get screwed up with the words and the various labels that people use: this medicine can get you hooked, plain and simple. I have seen it over and over again.
Now if you find yourself on this particular medication and you are enjoying it just a bit too much, then what can you do? I would suggest that you:
* Reduce your dosage or eliminate the medication entirely by replacing it with safer alternatives. Ask your doctor for help with this and if he refuses to acknowledge the addictive potential, seek another doctor or simply tell him that you are experiencing unwanted side effects from Ultram and need an alternative medicine, preferably something that is not an opiate. There are strong painkillers out there that are not addictive, for example, ask about Torodal and see if you might take that.
* Find new ways to manage your physical pain that are not dependent on medication. There are pain clinics out there that might help you with this and introduce you to more holistic techniques for managing pain.
* Ask for help by calling a drug detox center or an addiction treatment facility if you cannot overcome this addiction on your own. There is no shame in going into a detox unit in order to get off of a medicine. There are plenty of “ordinary” people in rehab and it is not the horror freak show that you might be picturing in your mind of nothing but heroin junkies who live in the gutters. Rehab and detox is not like that at all and has not been that way for a long time. Plenty of “regular” people get addicted to all sorts of different substances and seek help in rehabs. Do not think that you are special or above such an experience. If you cannot overcome it on your own then consider asking for help.