Used as another form of the powerful prescription painkiller, tramadol, Ultram has the power to become addictive on it’s own. If not taken carefully, individuals can develop a dependency on the medication and form an addiction to it. If an addiction develops, The Recovery Village has programs designed to help individuals manage their addiction to Ultram and detox from Ultram safely and healthily.

What is Ultram?

Ultram is the brand name version of the drug, tramadol. Ultram is described as a painkiller that can be prescribed for the treatment of moderate to severe pain. The drug is available as an extended-release version called Ultram ER, which is reserved for around-the-clock pain, as opposed to treating pain on an acute, as-needed basis. Ultram can be taken following surgery, while the extended-release version is meant for chronic pain.

What is Ultram Addiction?

Ultram is described as an opioid agonist, a controlled substance, and a highly addictive painkiller. Not only does the prescription drug have addictive qualities, but developing a physical dependence is also very possible. This means that withdrawal symptoms can occur when someone who takes the medication for a prolonged period of time tries to suddenly stop taking the drug without weaning off the drug.

Risks of Being Addicted to Ultram

Once addicted to Ultram, individuals face various risks. First and foremost, the body’s chemical makeup changes drastically.The body becomes dependent on Ultram to feel any sense of relief, so once the central nervous system gets used to the sense of relief it receives from the drug, it is very challenging to get the body to return to its normal state.

Another risk of Ultram addiction is the potential for overdose. The longer an individual takes the drug, the more likely it is that an individual will need to take higher doses and amounts in order to achieve the desired level of relief. Over time, gradually increasing the dosage also increases the possibility of an overdose occurring. Overdoses can lead to severe, long-term effects, including death.

Ultram Addiction Signs, Symptoms and Effects

There are several symptoms and side effects that reveal a person is becoming addicted to Ultram. A major sign of addiction is when people continue to take the medication regardless of the negative side effects. Individuals can become dependent on the drug in order to get through their everyday life. Dependence is different from addiction. When a person is dependent on a drug , their body is physically used to its presence, so when they stop taking the drug suddenly, they go into somewhat of a shock. That’s what leads to withdrawal symptoms.

Psychological Effects of Dependence

When a person becomes addicted or dependent on Ultram, there are a variety of psychological effects it could have on a person’s behavior. Some of these effects include:

  • Anxiety
  • Nervousness
  • Irritability
  • Hallucinations
  • Depression

Physical Dependence

The physical side effects that can come with a dependency or addiction to Ultram can be more severe than the psychological ones. Some of these effects include:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Constipation and diarrhea
  • Drowsiness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Excessive shivering
  • Loss of appetite
  • Seizures
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Dizziness
  • Memory loss
  • Fainting
  • Blisters forming under the skin


Ultram withdrawal can be highly uncomfortable if it is not handled with professional assistance. The amount of time it takes for a person to withdraw from Ultram ultimately depends on the severity of the addiction, the amount of time Ultram has been consumed, and the dosage amount. Withdrawal symptoms can vary from physical and psychological effects, but can also have some similarities as well. Common withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Body aches
  • Excessive sweating
  • Restlessness
  • Insomnia
  • Agitation
  • Rapid breathing
  • Hypertension
  • Stomach pain
  • Depression
  • Pupil dilation
  • Drug cravings

Treatment Options for Ultram Addiction

Considering the fact that Ultram alters the chemical makeup in the brain, it is important to seek professional treatment when attempting an Ultram detox. If the drug intake is stopped too abruptly, the body can go into shock and the withdrawal symptoms can start faster and be stronger. To prevent this from happening, it’s most beneficial for a person’s detox to work with a medical professional to start gradually weaning the individual off Ultram. Detoxing this way allows the body to return to its normal state in a healthy amount of time, in the safest way possible. Withdrawal symptoms can still be uncomfortable, but a doctor can prescribe certain medications to ease those symptoms as they arise.

Clinical therapists and medical professionals state that the most effective way to manage an addiction is to go through an accredited facility to receive treatment. The Recovery Village offers various treatment programs to help individuals begin their journey to a drug-free life. The treatment process at The Recovery Village is very thorough and individualized for each patient’s unique situation. Patients will be evaluated by the treatment team to determine the proper form of treatment that will be the most effective for them. During this time, the treatment team looks out for any kinds of underlying co-occurring disorders that could be present during the addiction. Once a treatment plan is in place, a patient will begin the detoxification process off of Ultram. This will most likely be done through tapering, which is reducing the dosage of Ultram gradually to wean the body off the drug. The amount of time this takes to complete  varies based on the length of the addiction and the severity of it. Once complete, patients have the opportunity to begin attending various programs to help them acquire the coping skills to further their everyday lives. A patient’s treatment team may recommend:

  • Inpatient Treatment
  • Outpatient Treatment
  • Intensive Outpatient Treatment
  • Intensive Inpatient Treatment
  • Partial Hospitalization Programs

After one of these programs are complete, patients can enter various aftercare programs to ensure sobriety and continue learning the tools originally taught in treatment. Attending regular therapy sessions, 12-step programs and even living in sober-living communities may be helpful to an individual’s recovery.

Professional treatment is not only the best way to ensure a successful detox and recovery, but it is also the safest. Working with medical professionals will not only assist individuals with ridding their body of the drug, but it can also ease the withdrawal symptoms that are experienced. Working with a doctor allows the opportunity for withdrawal symptoms to be managed comfortably.

The Recovery Village has facilities in Florida, Washington, Ohio, Colorado and Maryland. Each facility has their own recreational programs, individualized therapy, and group counseling to help patients with their recovery. Overall, The Recovery Village has various locations locations throughout the country. Locations include:

  • The Recovery Village: The Recovery Village, located in Umatilla, Florida, offers outpatient, partial hospitalization and inpatient treatment for prospective patients. Patients can participate in art, music and massage therapy.
  • The Recovery Village at Palmer Lake: Located in Colorado, The Recovery Village at Palmer Lake offers inpatient, partial hospitalization and intensive outpatient programs. This location has basketball, volleyball, and tennis courts, and has an exercise gym.
  • The Recovery Village Columbus: The Recovery Village Columbus in Ohio offers intensive outpatient programs, partial hospitalization and inpatient treatment programs. This location has an art room, a rec room, fully-stocked shuffleboard court and a pool table to enjoy.
  • The Recovery Ridgefield: The Recovery Village Ridgefield in Washington offers outpatient and aftercare programs. This location is the only facility to have a miniature golf course on site, as well as horseshoes and badminton.
  • Orlando Recovery Center: The Orlando Recovery Center helps patients with any co-occurring disorders along with substance misuse. This center offers inpatient, outpatient and partial hospitalization programs. This facility has field trips off site so patients can interact with their peers and volunteer in the community.
  • IAFF Center of Excellence: This center focuses on firefighters and first responders struggling with PTSD, addiction and other behavioral health disorders. The IAFF Center of Excellence offers inpatient, partial hospitalization and intensive outpatient programs. IAFF also offers an exercise gym and different sporting activities.

Ultram Addiction Statistics

Ultram and tramadol are both prescription painkillers, which means even people who are prescribed the medication by a doctor are at risk for gaining a dependency or an addition to it. Take a look at some statistics regarding an Ultram or tramadol addiction:

  • In 2015, 24,904,460 prescriptions of tramadol were administered
  • Tramadol was the 28th most used drug in the United States in 2015
  • Tramadol became a Schedule IV Controlled Substance in 2014
  • In England, 11.1 million prescriptions for tramadol were written in 2012
  • In 2011, there were more than 20,000 emergency room visits throughout the United States as a result of an Ultram/tramadol overdose
  • 2.6 million people ages 12 and up used tramadol for nonmedical purposes in 2011, according to The Drug Enforcement Administration.
Medical Disclaimer

The Recovery Village aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers.