The opioid epidemic has skyrocketed in the past several years as doctors continue to overprescribe their patients. As a nationwide issue, you would be hard-pressed to find someone that hadn’t been effected by it in some way or another. As we fight this battle, it’s important to know just what this addiction does to people.
What are opioids?
As we’ve discussed in blogs in the past, “opioids” is more of a generic term that includes all natural or synthetic painkillers coming from the infamous poppy plant. These include: Oxycodone, Fentanyl, Codeine, Morphine, Heroin, Hydrocodone, and Opium. Opioids are prescribed for pain, whether that’s for surgeries, injuries, etc.
How do people become addicted?
When people use opioids, it triggers a chemical response within the brain that mimics pleasure. While many people think that everyone gets ‘hooked’ on opioids after the first use, that’s not he case. After even just following the doctor’s instructions, people become dependent on the drug because of the length of time they use it. At some point, the body become dependent on the drug, and the person feels withdrawal symptoms when not using opioids.
Because the ‘high’ people feel diminishes the more someone’s body builds up a tolerance, it takes more and more of the opioid to get the same ‘high.’
What are the symptoms of addiction?
Symptoms could be:
- Cravings for the opioids
- Change in personal/social attitude
- Mood swings
- Impaired memory
- Slurred speech
How do people find an alternative?
Being open and honest with friends and family can help people realize their dependency. These people can also get you the help you need. Here at Elite Pain Management, we can help you fight cravings so that you can return to a fulfilling, productive life. We typically use a multifaceted approach to addiction, which could include behavioral therapy, addiction treatment medication, and more.