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Opiates

What are Opiates?

Opiates are made up of legal and illegal drugs either used recreationally,  because of addiction, or as painkillers. In technical terms opiates are drugs produced from poppy plants and powerful opiates are available in powder and black tar.  They are also prescribed by doctors in the form of  painkillers known as oxycodone, oxycontin, Vicodin, Darvon, morphine, codeine, and dilaudid, etc. 

What are the effects of Opiates?

Opiates are highly addictive pain relievers and without regular supervision by a doctor, patients can develop a tolerance for these drugs and in the long-run might start taking larger and more frequent doses to relieve pain. Once a tolerance is developed and patients start taking bigger doses of opiates or opioids, it can be inferred that one has developed a dependency and has possibly become addicted. In addition to having constant issues refilling prescriptions and visiting multiple doctors for new prescriptions, opium based medicines have other side-effects such as drowsiness, lack of alertness, and sometimes even zoning or nodding off. Opium addiction side-effects are not only limited to nodding off or drowsiness but if opiates dependency is developed, patients could face fatal consequences and develop severe lung, heart and skin diseases.

What are the warning signs of Opiate use?

One of the biggest signs of opiate addiction is the continuous usage of opium based pain-killers or illegal drugs despite their dangerous side-effects. Warning signs for opiate usage can be divided into physical and mental symptoms as follows:

Physical Signs:

  • Notable euphoria.
  • Drowsiness.
  • Dilated pupils
  • Breathing problems i.e. slowed breathing
  • Loss of consciousness and nodding off
  • Constipation

Mental Signs:

  • Visiting multiple doctors and lying about pain to renew painkillers prescriptions
  • Erratic behavior
  • Dramatic mood shifts
  • Social isolation

Info about Opiate Addiction

Opiates are strong drugs and attempting to stop after prolonged use can leave a patient suffering from nausea, headaches, diarrhea, sweating, fatigue, inability to sleep or anxiety. Opiate addiction is not caused by painkillers alone, people often times resort to street drugs such as heroine to supplement their opiate addiction.

Treatment

Opiate addiction is a severe form of addiction but if managed properly and with proper care, the addict can overcome opiate addiction and go on to live a stable and healthy life. Withdrawal from opiates is extremely difficult but it is not impossible. Opiate addiction can be treated with proper treatment and rehab plans. Opiates treatment involves:

Detoxification

The first treatment to curing this addiction is detoxification from the drug and this is the most difficult part because this is when a patient faces extreme physical withdrawal effects. At this point, having a support system and an environment of constant supervision is extremely important, therefore patients are recommended to enroll in a facility with a safe and comfortable environment.

Customized Treatment Plans

Treatment plans should be designed on the basis of mental and physical needs of the patient and depending on their addiction, whether they are addicted to heroin, opium or painkillers and the duration of their addiction. The plans should be designed to take care of the individual needs of each patient.

Re-integration

Recovery from addiction does not end with rehab but successful re-integration in society is essential to prevent further drug abuse of any type. When creating a treatment plan  it is advisable to join recommended support groups and learn skills that can help in successful reintegration into society.

Opiate usage is becoming increasingly common and the drugs are devastating for physical and mental health and even sometimes fatal, if you or someone you know is suffering from opiate addiction then look out from the symptoms and withdrawal effects mentioned above so that you can take preventative and curative steps to ensure full recovery and successful reintegration of you or your loved ones back into a life of fulfillment.