What are opiates?

Opiates are commonly referred to as narcotics. And they are central nervous system depressants that are conventionally prescribed to relieve pain. Opiates produce two effects when they are taken: Pain relief and pleasure.

Common prescription opiates that are commonly abused are: Morphine, Cough syrups containing codeine, Meperidine and Paregoric containing opium.

There are three broad categories of opiates

Morphines: Morphines are opium derivatives that occur naturally

Opioids: Opioids are half-baked morphine synthetic derivatives that comprises oxymorphone, hydrocodone and oxycodone.

Synthetic compound class: These class of opiates include Fentanyl, Meperidine, Codeine, Propoxyphene, Methadone, Levorphanol and Alfentanil.

In the society today, the use of opiates illegally is growing and it is a major concern because of the health threats that it poses.

When someone abuses opiates, there is a tendency for the individual to have respiratory system problems.

This happens because, opiates slow down breathing. As a matter of fact, when opiates are taken in large quantities, the person’s respiratory system can be fully shut down and this causes eventual death.

Someone who abuses opiates will certainly develop tolerance to it. And this implies that the individual would need more of the drugs to get the same effects.

People who are addicted to opiates need to seek help for themselves before it becomes worse. And the first step in recovery is detoxification. Detoxification is primarily the removal of toxins build-up in the body.

The period of detoxification is not fixed because it depends on the severity of the individual’s abue problem. So, it could range between few days to a week or more.

When an individual is receiving treatment for opiates abuse, there is a tendency for the person to experience withdrawal symptoms. Some of the possible symptoms are listed below:

  • Muscle aches
  • Diarrhea
  • Yawning
  • Anxiety
  • Restlessness
  • Insomnia
  • Abdominal Cramps
  • Goosebumps
  • Nausea
  • Rapid Heart Beat
  • High Blood pressure
  • Sweating
  • Vomiting

To make the withdrawal symptoms milder, patients are often assisted with drugs to make them feel better. When an individual is done with detoxification, it becomes easy for them to take part in counseling and therapy sessions that would help them get their life back on track.

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