Three Common Opioid Questions
What are opioids?
Opioids are drugs that are vital medications prescribed for pain as well as terminal illness. Unfortunately, opioids have the potential for abuse when used excessively. The risk is that the user will become addicted due to the high potential of physical dependence. Opioids block pain but also affect the pleasure center creating a euphoric feeling. The recommendation is that when a person starts to feel the need to increase the prescribed dosage, it is time to visit the doctor again.
All opiates bind to the opioid receptors in the brain and central nervous system. As they bind to these receptors, the user’s experience of pain is reduced. However, the reduction of pain is not the only result. People can also experience feelings of euphoria or a sense of well-being.
What are some examples of opiods?
Percocet, OxyContin, Oxycodone, Dilaudud, Vicodin, Methadone, Morphine, Opana, , and Fentanyl. There are more as well.
What happens during an overdose?
Overdoses occur when there are too many opioids overwhelming the system that the brain shuts down breathing. If one isn’t breathing correctly, then not enough oxygen gets to the brain. This can cause the heart to stop, which could lead to unconsciousness, coma, and possibly even death.
Opioids are prescribed by doctors to treat chronic pain. At other times, opioids are prescribed after surgery. A doctor may prescribe an opiate to speed the return to normal activities after a major surgery. Unfortunately, these prescription medications are highly addictive. Even those who use them as prescribed can succumb to abuse and addiction.
Some of the common types of opioids include:
Of these drugs, fentanyl is the most potent and dangerous. Although, this does not negate the danger of the remaining opioids. Another opioid is heroin. Heroin is a “street” drug that is manufactured from morphine. One of the reasons that the opioid epidemic has become so deadly is that drug manufacturers add fentanyl to heroin.
The addiction to opioids, such as heroin, morphine, and other prescription pain medications for the management of pain has ravaged the nation. In fact, the issue has grown so much that it is often referred to as the “opioid epidemic”.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, opioid overdoses increased 30 percent from 2016 to 2017 in 45 states.
Signs of Addiction and Withdrawal
With the staggering numbers of people abusing opioids, many people have begun to ask about signs of opiate use. If you suspect that your loved one is abusing opiates, there are signs that you can look for.
Before tackling the symptoms, it is important to understand the different avenues for how people end up abusing opioids. Some people begin using them recreationally by borrowing, stealing, or buying the drugs from other people. While others start out taking prescribed medication as directed, but quickly develop a tolerance and end up abusing their medications. Breaking free from an addiction can cause opioid withdrawal.
If you or a loved one is struggling with Opiate Addiction contact Rehab Info today to find the best Rehab solution for your circumstances
There are several physical signs of opiate abuse or addiction. When determining if a loved one is abusing opioids, you should look for signs of euphoria, sedation, tiredness, confusion, constricted pupils, nodding off, loss of consciousness, and slowed breathing. While these are the general physical signs of prescription opioids, there are more specific ones for heroin usage.
When someone is using heroin, you should look for nausea, vomiting, slowed breathing, itching, and drowsiness. Other signs include flushed skin, constricted pupils, and dry mouth. All opioids result in constipation, so another sign of opioid abuse is the use of laxatives. Long-term use of heroin can result in skin infections and lowered immunity which results in frequent illness.
Behavioral and Lifestyle Signs
Many people will hide their physical signs of opioid abuse and addiction. As a result, it may be hard for you to identify these specific signs. On the other hand, you may notice behavioral or lifestyle signs. A person abusing opioids may withdraw from school or work. They often lose interest in previously enjoyed activities. They may begin to hang out with different people and neglect their appearance. Regarding attitude, many will become angry or irritated. At other times, they may appear anxious, nervous, secretive, or deceptive.
Other signs that can help you identify opioid abuse are withdrawal symptoms. While many people can hide the physical signs of use, it is harder to hide the physical symptoms of withdrawal. When someone is dependent on opioids, they will begin to experience withdrawal symptoms after a short period of time without using.
When a person experiences opioid withdrawal, they develop flu-like symptoms including:
- extreme anxiety
If you or someone you know is battling an opioid withdrawal or addiction, then you probably need professional help. We are here to offer you that lifeline. Call us today and let us help you get your life back.