Codeine is a short-acting opioid used to treat mild-to-moderate pain, and control coughs and diarrhea (due to its effects on gastrointestinal motility). It is a derivative of morphine which is from the opium poppy plant and is available in a salt form, like codeine phosphate. Codeine is known by many street names: Captain Cody, Cody, Lean, Schoolboy, Sizzurp, Loads, Pancakes, and Syrup.

Codeine is one of the most commonly abused drugs in the world because of the pleasurable euphoric feeling it gives at high doses. This is because of its activating effect on the brain’s reward system, which causes an excessive release of hormones associated with pleasure.

Codeine tolerance can develop through repeated usage, which forces users to take higher doses to achieve the same results. Thereafter, it results in codeine dependence and then addiction if not controlled.

It can be exceedingly difficult to treat a codeine phosphate addiction, because the withdrawal symptoms can cause relapse. This article will explain what codeine addiction is, give advice on how to recognize it, and information on how to get assistance.

Codeine Addiction Treatment and Rehab Center

What Is Codeine

Codeine is a narcotic medication that is frequently prescribed for its analgesic (pain treatment) and antitussive (cough suppressing) properties. It is prescribed as an analgesic for mild-to-moderate pain. Codeine has a short duration of action and is usually taken every 4 to 6 hours. Due to its addictive nature, codeine is reserved for when non-opioid medications are either intolerable or ineffective.

For the treatment of pain and cough, codeine is prescribed on its own or in combination with other medications. It is available in a pill, capsule, and liquid form.

Indications for Use

Codeine is commonly prescribed for its analgesic (treatment of pain) and antitussive effects (management of cough).

The Effects of Codeine Abuse

The effect of codeine abuse depends on the patient’s health, the dose, the frequency and duration of use. The risk is higher for first-time users, those taking extremely high doses, the elderly, and those with underlying lung diseases. The effects can both be physical and mental.

Mental Effects

  • Depression and anxiety
  • Psychosis and hallucination
  • Memory impairment
  • Euphoria
  • Mood swing

Physical Effects

  • Dizziness and fainting
  • Dry mouth and constipation
  • Rashes and itching
  • Urinary retention
  • Decreased libido
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Seizures
  • Slow heart rate

Symptoms and Signs of Codeine Use

Codeine can cause the following signs and symptoms even if used as prescribed:

  • Headache
  • Constipation
  • Nausea
  • Urinary retention

Codeine misuse over a period can cause tolerance and higher doses are required to produce the same results. If unchecked, it can eventually lead to addiction, which can induce some of these behavioral signs of codeine addiction:

  • Social withdrawal and isolation
  • Attempt to get codeine illegally, such as forging a prescription
  • Doctor shopping to get multiple prescriptions
  • Stealing codeine or money to buy it
  • Neglecting family responsibilities
  • Faking illness to get a codeine prescription
  • Relationship issues
  • Insomnia

Codeine Addiction Treatment Options

Evidence-based interventions are available to help codeine addicts win their battle with addiction. The patient’s treatment plan may include more than one of these options:

  • Medical detoxification
  • Vocational assistance
  • Educational services
  • Medication-aided treatment
  • Social support after treatment

Medical Treatment for Codeine Addiction

Codeine detox treatment is prescribed to reduce or eliminate the possibility of withdrawal symptoms after its discontinuation. Symptoms of codeine withdrawal make it challenging to treat the addiction and pose a risk of relapse. Medical detoxification is supervised by experts where the dose of the drug is gradually tapered off over a period.

In some cases, codeine addiction treatment may involve the use of other medications.

Inpatient Treatment vs. Outpatient Treatment for Codeine Addiction

Inpatient treatment at a facility allows patients to be formally hospitalized and safeguard them from any potentially harmful influences of their surroundings. It is usually recommended for patients with severe symptoms. The severity of the symptoms determines how long a patient receives therapy in an inpatient hospital.

Outpatient treatment is for patients with less serious symptoms. In addition, this option is used to follow up on previous inpatients and integrate them back into society. Patients can receive therapy in outpatient settings while maintaining their daily routine and work. It is usually less expensive than at an inpatient facility.

Process and Stages of Codeine Addiction Treatment in Dr.Vorobjev Clinic

We are aware that many people who are addicted to codeine are hesitant to seek help because they do not believe they need it. We also know that addiction is a difficult battle that requires teamwork. For this reason, the first appointment at Dr.Vorobjev Clinic is a consultation with a specialist to help the patient understand why they need assistance and allay their fear. Following a thorough diagnostic process, each patient will receive a unique treatment plan with a high success rate.

Diagnosis of Codeine Addiction

Our extensive diagnosis process uses the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders guidelines. The outcome of the diagnosis and the assessment of the patient’s health status will determine the treatment approach.

Codeine Detoxification Treatment

Medical detoxification is for patients with a high risk of withdrawal symptoms following codeine discontinuation. Withdrawal symptoms is the biggest challenge of codeine addiction treatment and increases the chance for relapse. Detoxification makes symptoms of codeine withdrawal less severe and enhances the coping mechanism of the patient.


Working with a psychologist in individual and group meetings helps the patient to understand themself, find the causes of their codeine abuse and create a strong foundation for drug-free behavior.


Supportive therapy at our clinic allows patients to maintain sobriety and avoid relapse.

Average Length of Codeine Addiction Treatment

The average length of codeine addiction treatment depends on the severity of the addiction, the patient’s overall health status, and existing support systems. It usually lasts for a couple of months.

Effectiveness of Treatment for Codeine Addiction

We are confident in the efficacy of our treatment strategy because of all the success stories and overwhelmingly positive feedback from our past patients who had treatment for codeine addiction in our facility. We provide sessions that will support their commitment and help them reintegrate into society. We know that it is a lifetime commitment to stay addiction free.

Cost of Codeine Addiction Treatment

The cost is determined by whether you are treated as an inpatient or outpatient at our facility and the length of treatment. The cost of treatment in our clinic starts from 2,700 €.


Dr.Vorobjev Clinic provides top-notch facilities and services for addiction treatment. Our drug addiction specialists have a wealth of knowledge and expertise from helping hundreds of addicts resume healthy lifestyles. Only the most effective methods for treating codeine addiction are used by our medical professionals.

Patents and Certificates

At Dr.Vorobjev Clinic, our acute care for codeine-addicted patients stands out above other hospitals. We are recognized and trained addiction specialists with the Drug, Alcohol & Addiction Counselor Certified (DAACC) certification.


“I was treated for codeine addiction in this clinic. I am grateful to the doctors for their help and my new sober life. It’s not just a place for detox, they teach you how to fight cravings for drugs. I would also like to mention the comfort, amenities, and excellent food.”

Zivka Bikovic