Extracted from the seeds of opium poppy or artificially synthesized in laboratories, opiates and related drugs contain morphine and codeine among other addictive substances. Opiate drugs are prescribed by physicians to cure pain but their overdoses are used by addicted people for drug abuse. Opiates reduce anxiety, suppress pain and their higher doses even produce the sensation of euphoria. There are various ways in which a person can consume opiates for addiction purposes including taking them by mouth, smoking, snorting or intravenous injections (this one is most popular among the abusers). Along with all the adverse health and social effects that these drugs can have the use of intravenous needles can lead to infectious diseases and can even cause respiratory arrest and death.
Motivation for taking opiates
Those who become addicted to opiates take the drugs more than they intend, spend much time obtaining the drug, and even give up other pursuits for the sake of the drug and continue to use it despite the severe psychological and physical harms. The fact is most people cannot give up opiates even if they try to cut down or stop. People who take opiates regularly for a long period of time adapt to it and their nerve receptors begin to resist the drug causing the need for higher doses. Some people who take an opiate for physical pain are physically dependent on it but not addicted and thus do not crave it as do addicts.
Detoxification is the first and initial step for most drug addicts. This involves a controlled and medically supervised withdrawal from the drug with varied intensities depending on the particular case. Those undergoing a detox treatment suffer from severe withdrawal symptoms that also vary according to the dose and speed of withdrawal. Short-acting opiates, like heroin, tend to produce more intense but briefer symptoms. There is no single approach that can be deemed as best for all addicts and different cases require different programs.
Early withdrawal symptoms of Opiate Treatment
When a person is undergoing opiate treatment the support of family and friends is indispensable. So, the people related to the patient must know some of the early withdrawal symptoms that are generally witnessed after a detox program. These include
- muscle aches
- increased tearing
- runny nose
The late symptoms of Opium Withdrawal:
- abdominal cramping
- dilated pupils
- goose bumps
Where to go for Opiate Treatment?
Although there is no dearth of rehab and detoxification centers in the US you can only trust a well-established and experienced facility in order to help your loved one kick the addiction.