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Fentanyl Detox

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Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid narcotic that is between 50 and 100 times more potent than morphine. This prescription medication is sometimes prescribed for the short-term treatment of severe pain, especially following surgery. However, fentanyl is also made and distributed illegally. In recent years, illicitly manufactured fentanyl has been contributing to increased rates of opioid overdose across the country. The potent synthetic opioid is currently responsible for the majority of overdose deaths throughout the U.S. Fentanyl detox in Orange County can help you or your loved one overcome dependency once and for all.

If you or someone close to you has been struggling with fentanyl addiction, seeking professional help is essential. At Pacific Sands Recovery, we have developed a fentanyl detox program that is both integrated and individualized. While medical detox is an important initial step, it must be immediately followed up by a higher level of care to be truly effective. For this reason, we also offer residential addiction treatment at our Orange County fentanyl rehab. Contact us today to learn more or to begin your personal healing journey.

What is Fentanyl?

The United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) describes fentanyl as, “A  potent synthetic opioid drug approved by the Food and Drug Administration for use as an analgesic (pain relief) and anesthetic. It is approximately 100 times more potent than morphine and 50 times more potent than heroin as an analgesic.”

Similar to other opioid analgesics, fentanyl works by binding to opioid receptors within the brain, leading to feelings of relaxation, pain relief, and euphoria. When taken in large doses, fentanyl also leads to a host of side effects including nausea, vomiting, dizziness, drowsiness, pupillary constriction, and respiratory depression.

When taken as prescribed, fentanyl is effective for the treatment of severe, acute pain. However, overdosing on the substance is easy because of its potency. When a person experiences a fentanyl overdose they might experience cold and clammy skin, dangerously decreased heart rate and blood pressure, respiratory depression, coma, and death. In some cases, overdose can be reversed if emergency medical help is immediately sought.

Fentanyl Misuse & Dependence

Fentanyl can be snorted or sniffed, smoked, or used orally in a tablet or pill form. When manufactured illegally, the synthetic opioid is generally sold alone or in combination with heroin and other substances. Fentanyl has been identified in a range of counterfeit pills, which mimic pharmaceutical drugs such as oxycodone and hydrocodone. In fact, the majority of people who overdose on fentanyl are unaware that they are consuming the drug.

Fentanyl is highly addictive because of its potency. Medical professionals generally prescribe the synthetic opioid for no longer than two weeks. However, physical dependence can occur even when fentanyl is taken exactly as prescribed.

Signs & Symptoms of Fentanyl Addiction

Signs and symptoms of fentanyl addiction include:

    • Attempting to quit or cut back on the amount of fentanyl being used with limited success.
    • Craving fentanyl throughout the day.
    • Consistently using more fentanyl than intended for longer periods of time than intended.
    • Experiencing problems in interpersonal relationships as a result of fentanyl use.
    • Experiencing issues at work or at school as a result of fentanyl use.
    • Spending a disproportionate amount of time obtaining, using, and recovering from the effects of fentanyl.
    • Combining fentanyl with other chemical substances.
    • Neglecting activities that were previously enjoyed and held in high esteem.
    • Developing a physical tolerance for fentanyl over time.
    • Experiencing withdrawal symptoms when fentanyl use is stopped suddenly.

Fentanyl Overdose

The presence of fentanyl has led to a sharp increase in opioid overdose deaths. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports, “In 2020, more than 56,000 deaths involving synthetic opioids (other than methadone) occurred in the United States, which is more deaths than from any other type of opioid. Synthetic opioid-involved death rates increased by over 56% from 2019 to 2020 and accounted for over 82% of all opioid-involved deaths in 2020. The rate of overdose deaths involving synthetic opioids was more than 18 times higher in 2020 than in 2013.” As rates of fentanyl overdose continue to climb, adequate and accessible treatment options are more important than ever before.

At Pacific Sands Recovery we understand that effective medical detoxification is the first step on the road to long-term fentanyl addiction recovery. We have developed a fentanyl detox program that focuses on safety and comfort. The National Institutes on Drug Abuse define a fentanyl use disorder as, “Compulsive drug seeking and drug use that can be difficult to control, despite harmful consequences. When someone is addicted to drugs, they continue to use them even though they cause health problems or issues at work, school, or home. A fentanyl use disorder can range from mild to severe.”

What Happens During A Fentanyl Detox Program?

Fentanyl addiction is treated with a combination of Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) and behavioral therapies. While medications for opioid use disorder are effective and life-saving, they must be coupled with a comprehensive recovery program. Active addiction impacts all areas of life. Therefore, mental, emotional, and spiritual health must be addressed once physical stabilization has been achieved. 

Medications approved for the treatment of opioid use disorder include:

Methadone —  A full opioid agonist, methadone works by binding to opioid receptors in the brain and reducing drug cravings and symptoms of withdrawal. 

Buprenorphine —  An opioid receptor partial agonist, buprenorphine works by reducing symptoms of opioid withdrawal and eliminating drug cravings. 

Naltrexone — An opioid receptor antagonist, naltrexone prevents fentanyl from attaching to opioid receptors, thereby rendering it ineffective (blocking its effects). 

At Pacific Sands Recovery, we focus on mental, emotional, and spiritual healing, taking a whole-person approach to recovery. While MAT is an important piece of the puzzle, evidence-based therapies are just as vital. We offer Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT), contingency management, and Motivational Interviewing (MI) as part of our curriculum of clinical care. 

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Visit the admissions page at Pacific Sands Recovery today to learn more about detox.

Fentanyl Withdrawal

Fentanyl withdrawal can be extremely uncomfortable, though it is rarely life-threatening. When treated appropriately, symptoms of opioid withdrawal tend to resolve completely within one to two weeks. Symptoms associated with fentanyl withdrawal include:

  • Profuse sweating/night sweats. 
  • Muscle aches and joint pain.
  • General feelings of physical discomfort. 
  • Nausea, diarrhea, and vomiting. 
  • Body tremors/uncontrollable shaking. 
  • Insomnia and other sleep-related issues. 
  • Anxiety and panic attacks. 
  • Severe and overwhelming drug cravings. 

Fentanyl Withdrawal Symptom Timeline

The severity and duration of fentanyl withdrawal depends on several factors, including:

  • The frequency of fentanyl use. 
  • The amount of fentanyl taken on a daily basis. 
  • The presence of pre-existing conditions. 
  • Whether or not fentanyl was being used in conjunction with other substances. 

In most cases, severe symptoms of fentanyl withdrawal peak within the first 48 hours after the final dose. Symptoms persist for around one week but can last longer in certain cases. 

  • 24 to 72 Hours After the Final Dose — Acute withdrawal symptoms develop. These symptoms must be treated in a medical detox center. 
  • Day 3 to 7 — Severe physical symptoms subside. Drug cravings are still intense.
  • Day 7 On — A person might experience post-acute fentanyl withdrawal, which can consist of sleep-related issues, drug cravings, and mild anxiety or depression. 
Fentanyl Detox in Orange County.

Fentanyl Detox And Treatment In Orange County

In addition to providing our clients with a safe and comfortable detoxification experience, we provide them with the services they need to maintain sobriety. Physical stabilization is the main priority of medically monitored detox. However, at Pacific Sands Recovery, we believe that comprehensive healing should begin as early as detox. For this reason, we offer therapeutic intervention and dual-diagnosis treatment options. If you or someone you love has been battling a fentanyl addiction, we are here to help. Our fentanyl detox program focuses on more than safe drug withdrawal. We help our clients lay a solid foundation for continued success in sobriety. Our main priority is helping people of all ages in Orange County, California, and surrounding areas go on to lead to healthy, happy lives they deserve. Contact us today to begin your healing journey.


  • I would just like to share how Grateful I am with my experience through my addiction at this facility. I couldn’t possibly ask to be in such a “SAFE/COMFORTABLE” environment while receiving treatment for my addiction. I would just like to say Thank you sooo much to ALL the staff there from the Nurse’s to counselors and therapist all of you are a True Blessing in helping me through my journey of sobriety. I couldn’t feel more comfortable there on how they monitored my physical health and on dealing with my emotional health with there therapy sessions and groups I truly see them ALL as Family!

    Andrew N.
  • As a professional in the recovery field I have worked with many detox centers and none compare to The this one. Their staff is incredibly attentive and knowledgable regarding the needs of individuals seeking recovery from the very start. Their facility is welcoming and homey while remaining very luxe. I would recommend this facility to any loved one or friend looking to start down their journey of sobriety.

  • This place helped saved my life, and a great stepping stone to get my life on the right track. Was there first client under new management, caring staff and owners, comfortable place to get you on your feet in sobriety.

  • Great Staff. Comfortable Environment. Awesome place to Get Clean and Sober. Thank you guys for everything.


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    1909 W Carlton Pl
    Santa Ana, CA 92704


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