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Opiates and Addiction

Opiates (which are sometimes referred to as Opioids) can be derived from the poppy plant, partially synthesized, or fully synthesized.

opiates addiction information

The Opiate classification of drugs are both legal and illegal. The legal Opiates are used to help people cope with pain, and they work by binding to the natural Opioid receptors in the brain. In doing so, they actually mimic the chemicals that produce sensations of pain relief and pleasure.

As long as Opiates are used as they are intended, they can be very effective at blocking pain and helping people feel better. It’s common for them to be prescribed following a serious injury or after a surgical procedure during the beginning stages of healing. They work quite well for all kinds of severe pain, and because of their effectiveness, for a period of time, they were prescribed frequently. The problem is that because Opiates work so well at relieving pain, and because they produce positive psychological responses, they are also some of the most abused drugs on the planet.

Perhaps you’ve been using Opiates for some time, and you now believe that you’re addicted to them. Most people don’t mean to get addicted to Opiates when they start taking them, but when addiction occurs, getting professional help is the best way to stop. Some of the top Opiate rehab centers in the U.S. provide the help that’s needed to successfully recover from this type of addiction.

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What Drugs are Opiates, and Why are They so Addictive?

It’s possible that you’ve been taking an Opiate medication, but you didn’t realize it. When you’re not familiar with the various drug classifications, you don’t always recognize when a drug falls into this category. Opiate drugs are:

  • Vicodin
  • Percocet
  • Oxycodone
  • Opana
  • Opium
  • Morphine
  • Methadone
  • Lortab
  • Lorcet
  • Hydromorphone
  • Hydrocodone
  • Heroin
  • Fentanyl
  • Demerol
  • Dilaudid
  • Darvon
  • Amytal

Maybe you recognize some of these because they’ve been a part of your medicine cabinet, or perhaps you recognize the ones that are illegal. No matter what Opiates you may be using, it’s important to understand the effect they can have on your brain and body, and you need to be able to recognize when you’ve become addicted.

Opioid abuse is very common because of the way these drugs work in the brain. For most people, their Opiate use begins with a need to be free from pain, or at least have their pain lessened. As you take the drugs for a period of time, your body builds up a tolerance to them, and it isn’t long before they no longer work as well as they did in the beginning. To help, you may take more than the recommended dose, or you may take them too close together in order to get relief. There are some people who actually crush the pills and snort them or even add water to the crushed powder and inject them. Opiate abuse generally leads to addiction.

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Signs of Opiate Abuse

If you’re abusing Opiates, or you’re using them inappropriately, there are certain signs and symptoms you can look for to determine whether you may be on the verge of having a serious problem. These signs are also helpful to know if you are concerned that someone in your family might be struggling with Opiate abuse. They are:

  • Increased sensations of anxiety
  • Frequent panic attacks
  • Feelings of euphoria
  • Instances of psychosis
  • A higher level of self-esteem
  • Increased depression symptoms

When Opiate Abuse Becomes Opiate Addiction: Symptoms to Look for

Once Opiate abuse has moved into an Opiate addiction, there are additional symptoms you can look for to recognize this shift. It’s very common for people who are addicted to Opiates to become constipated to the point of needing medical attention. Nausea and vomiting, confusion, chronic fatigue, and respiratory difficulties are also very common.

If an Opiate addiction continues for too long, the results can be catastrophic for the user. These drugs are very powerful and potent, and they’re not intended to be used for a long period of time. Prolonged use can result in chest pains and even death, eventually. That’s why once an addiction is recognized, going to Opiate addiction treatment is the best course of action.

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Long Term Opiate Addiction Behaviors

Perhaps you’ve been using Opiates for a long time, but you’re not really sure if you’re addicted to them or not. You may feel as though they’re giving you the relief you need from pain, but how do you know if you’re actually addicted to them? These Opiate addiction behaviors are excellent indicators:

  • You’ve been using them for much longer than intended
  • You’ve increased the amount of your dosage
  • You spend a large amount of time trying to obtain your drugs
  • You’ve had to find a way to obtain your drugs without a doctor’s prescription
  • You’ve started to abandon important activities because of your drug use
  • You’ve tried to stop taking Opiates without success

Stopping Opiates Cold Turkey: Opiate Withdrawal

Far too many people try to stop taking Opiates abruptly without any type of professional help, and that can be very dangerous. Opiate withdrawal is a very real concern, and you may experience intense cravings, pain in your stomach, cold sweats, nausea, chills, and diarrhea. You may also become agitated and angry as the drugs start to leave your system.

Consulting one of the top Opiate rehab centers in the Pacific Northwest will help you know the best way to stop taking Opiates so that you can quit safely. It will also minimize the effects of withdrawal on your body.

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Opiate Addiction Treatment Centers

Here at Northpoint Recovery, we want you to be healthy, and if you’ve become addicted to Opiates, we can assist you with stopping them. Drug detox and Opiate addiction treatment methods are designed to provide you with the support you need during this critical time as you prepare to recover. To learn more, please contact us.