3 Addictions

Helping You To Recover From Addiction

Category: Opioid Addiction (Page 2 of 2)


How Long Does It Take For Tramadol To Kick In?

Tramadol is a drug administered to manage pain. It can manage moderate to extreme pain resulting from injury, surgery, or illness. It is also used for the treatment of chronic pain in individuals who stop responding to other pain medication.

Because it is an opioid and therefore a controlled drug, it can only be obtained with a prescription. It comes in various forms: capsules, tablets, and liquid form. There is also an injectable form that is administered from a hospital.

Tramadol is usually prescribed to adults, but children who are 12 years and older can tolerate it as well. It is, however, not suitable for everyone. If you suffer from any of the following conditions, you should stay clear of the drug:

  • TramadolBreathing difficulties
  • Conditions that cause seizures
  • Head injury
  • Addiction to pain meds, alcohol, and recreational drugs
  • Liver and kidney problems
  • Allergies to other pain meds

How Tramadol Works

A physician prescribes tramadol. You must follow the dosage as indicated by a health professional. The dosage might vary, but ideally, one should not consume more than 400mg within 24 hours. Because tramadol is not harsh on the stomach, it is possible to take it before meals.

Tramadol comes in different forms:

  • Rapid-acting tablets containing 50 milligrams of tramadol
  • Slow-responding tablets come in 50, 100, 75, 200, 400, and 300 milligrams of tramadol.
  • Drops that can be swallowed and usually contain about 100mg of liquid tramadol.
  • Injections
  • Soluble tablets containing 50 milligrams of tramadol
  • Tablets that melt in the mouth

TramadolThe fast-acting injections drop, and tablets kick in within 30 minutes to an hour. They are taken for pain that is anticipated to last for a short period. They can, however, be consumed to manage long-term or chronic pain. It is a pretty safe opioid to take as long as the doctor’s instructions are followed to the letter.

The slow-acting forms of tramadol take a longer time to kick in. This is because the drug is slowly released into the body over a long period, from 12 hours to an entire day. Although the effects take longer to kick in, they also last longer, making them ideal for people dealing with chronic pain.

Other factors determine how soon tramadol will kick in. These include:

1. Interaction with other medications

If you take other medications, the interaction with tramadol might affect how fast the drug kicks in. It is vital to disclose to your doctor any other medications you might be taking before a tramadol prescription is given.

Some of the medications that can weaken or shorten the effect of tramadol include:

  • Carbamazepine is used in treating epilepsy.
  • Ondansetron is used to prevent vomiting and nausea.
  • Buprenorphine is a type of painkiller.
  • Rifampicin is a kind of antibiotic.

2. Interaction with alcohol and/or other substances

Opioids trigger a chemical reaction in the brain to manage pain. Other recreational drugs and substances also trigger the brain and might have similar or opposing effects. This interaction can affect how fast and effectively tramadol will kick into your system.

3. Physical attributes

All our bodies are unique. Your body size, weight, height, and general health can impact how fast tramadol kicks in. Some individuals feel the drug’s effects more strongly than others, while some experience zero side effects.

4. Pre-existing conditions

If you have a pre-existing condition and have been on treatment for a long time, the medications that you have been taking might cause changes in your body that will interfere with how your body responds to tramadol, including how long it will take to kick in.

How Should I Take Tramadol?

Because the drug comes in various forms, there are different ways of consuming it. The capsules are swallowed with a lot of water. Drops, on the other hand, are mixed into a glass of water before consumption.

The soluble tablets should be dissolved in half a cup (50ml) of water, and the soluble tablets should be placed on the tongue and allowed to dissolve. When taking the soluble tablets, always ensure your hands are dry so that it doesn’t start melting into your hand.

Should you take other Painkillers while on Tramadol?

Some painkillers can be safely taken with tramadol. These include aspirin, paracetamol and ibuprofen. However, you should not take tramadol if you are on painkillers that contain codeine. The interaction can cause adverse side effects.

It’s important to note that a good number of over-the-counter pain meds contain codeine. If you are on tramadol and decide to buy over-the-counter medication, make sure that you avoid those that contain codeine.

Is it safe to take Tramadol while Pregnant or Breastfeeding?

TramadolIt is generally believed that pregnant and breastfeeding mothers should not take tramadol. It is riskier to take it during the early stages of pregnancy because it can cause problems to the fetus. At the end of the pregnancy, it has been known to cause withdrawal symptoms in newborns.

However, if a woman is experiencing pain during pregnancy, a doctor might opt to treat them using tramadol but under very strict supervision and monitoring dosage. Only a qualified medical professional would be in a position to determine if, when, and how tramadol is administered during pregnancy.

It is, however, safe to breastfeed when you’re taking tramadol. This is because the amounts that pass through the breast milk are minimal and harmless to the baby.

It is important to take note of any side effects that arise from taking tramadol. While it is well tolerated in most, some individuals have had adverse reactions to it, so it is wise that caution is taken. The prescriptions should also be followed to the letter to prevent the possibility of dependence on the drug.

Lastly, it would be best if you always were honest with your doctor about your medical history, addictions, and all medications you might be taking so that they make an informed decision before prescribing tramadol.

Valium Addiction

Should I Go to Rehab For Valium Addiction?

The moment you notice that you’re struggling with Valium abuse, it is essential to seek help. Taking these first steps towards recovery is the hardest. Finding the right kind of help that will improve your chances of recovery is vital.

Many recovery centers offer treatment to individuals struggling with substance abuse, from hospitals to support groups, community centers, and even charities. Before settling on a treatment center, talk to your physician first. They are in the best position to advise and maybe even link you to the ideal rehab center.

When to Seek Help

Valium AddictionValium is a powerful drug used in the treatment of a variety of conditions. However, it is also highly addictive because once taken, and it raises dopamine levels. When used over time, an individual can develop a dependency on it.

If you notice that your need to take higher doses of the drug is building over time, this is a good indication that you need help. If you have been taking Valium prescribed or not, and you feel unsure whether you have a problem or not, chances are you do have a problem and will need to seek help.

 Valium Addiction & Rehab Options

Valium AddictionThe first step towards recovering from Valium misuse is accepting that you are not okay and need help. Secondly, you will need to accept the help or treatment. Therapy is a key component in recovery. It is imperative in helping one deal with cravings and learning how to live a Valium-free life.

Going through medically assisted detoxification is necessary because drug withdrawal symptoms sometimes include life-threatening seizures. Behavioral therapy is usually part of the treatment. It helps the person struggling with Valium addiction evaluate why and how they got into that situation to avoid pitfalls after recovery.

There are several rehab options to choose from. These options are widely categorized into two: inpatient rehab and outpatient rehab. Inpatient rehab involves admission into a treatment facility, while outpatient rehab is where you stay at home but go to the hospital as directed by your physician.

Valium Addiction Treatment Facilities Options

Everyone struggling with Valium addiction can get treatment irrespective of their economic status. This is because there exist free as well as private rehabs. The downside with free treatment centers is that one might have to go through a long wait period before treatment commences. This is because the demand for treatment in these centers is very high, yet the resources needed to run them are limited.

Private rehab centers don’t come cheap. However, they are usually cozier, providing a great environment that aids with recovery because most private treatment centers offer substantial group support, which significantly aids in recovery.

Executive Rehab Centers

Valium AddictionIf budget is not an issue for you, seeking treatment for Valium addiction at a luxury or executive rehab center might be what you need. These treatment centers come with all kinds of plush amenities that provide as much comfort as one could imagine.

Most of these centers are designed with working professionals in mind. They have all the amenities needed for one to continue working as they go through treatment.

They are, however, very exclusive and pricey, usually accessible to celebrities and the very wealthy.

Intensive Outpatient Treatment

Unlike other outpatient programs, with intensive outpatient treatment, the person getting treated for Valium addiction is expected to attend a larger number of meetings weekly. This helps to keep the patient-focused on their recovery without interrupting their everyday life.

This type of treatment is also suitable for individuals who prefer to recover in their home’s comfort. Also, it is way cheaper than inpatient care.

Because of the meetings’ intensity, individuals going through this treatment still have an excellent chance of making a full recovery. This is because they spend a lot of time in meetings, which helps keep them from trouble and enables them to stay focused on their recovery.

What to Expect from a Rehab

Valium AddictionMost Valium addiction rehab centers employ the same structure in their treatment programs. The individual undergoing treatment is first taken through a series of tests that determine what treatment methods would be ideal for them and how long treatment should take.

Once that is determined, the individual is then taken through the detoxification process. This is the process of getting rid of the substance from the body, and it usually takes about a week. It is dangerous to quit Valium at once, and often the physicians will reduce the dosage of the drug gradually to diminish the risk of adverse withdrawal symptoms.

After detoxification, the patient can now begin therapy which is uniquely designed to suit their needs. Therapy is also long-term, and many people who have struggled with Valium addiction continue going for therapy long after beating the addiction.

 Ongoing Care

As soon as the individual receiving treatment for Valium addiction completes their treatment at a rehab center, they will require continued care. Sobriety doesn’t happen at once, it takes time, and there is always the risk of relapse. Keeping one connected to the rehabilitation center is essential.

Attending meetings and even taking part in programs where you’re helping another fight their substance addiction is also helpful. Ongoing care is critical in helping an individual stay sober despite the ups and downs of life.

So should you go to rehab for Valium addiction? It is highly recommended that you get help to fight your addiction from a rehabilitation center. This is because, first, it is a safer option. Should you suffer from severe withdrawal symptoms like seizures, you will get medical attention required to keep you alive. Secondly, at a rehab center, you will get the support you need to fight the Valium addiction successfully. Lastly, when you go through treatment for substance addiction from rehab, you will get a community of individuals that will be pivotal in your aftercare.

Oxycodone Withdrawal

Is Oxycodone Withdrawal Painful?

Oxycodone is an opioid that is often compared to Morphine. Even though the two target the Central Nervous System and provide pain relief, they are different. That is, Morphine is an Opiate that can be derived naturally from plants. Oxycodone, on the other hand, is an Opioid that is chemically manufactured.

Both are highly abused drugs, not only within the United States but globally. Notably, however, Oxycodone has an incredibly high potential for abuse and addiction. This is rooted in the fact that the drug often puts the user in a euphoric state due to its function as a pain reliever.

Oxycodone and Addiction

Oxycodone WithdrawalWhere did it all start? Oxycodone is said to have first entered the United States Market in the year 1939. It took a few years before anyone realized its high potential for abuse and addiction. Among the first to step up was the World Health Organization, warning people about opioid dependence.

Regardless, Oxycodone continued to be used in the medical field. Where at first it was used to help relieve pain in cancer patients, it was now prescribed for other kinds of pain. This change led to an increase and exposure in users.

Due to this, Oxycodone, which can be found in OxyContin and Percocet, is among the top drugs that lead to death. More specifically, death caused by an overdose on the drug.

This is not to say that Oxycodone cannot and does not provide pain relief. It does provide pain relief by attaching itself to the opioid receptors in the brain once it’s consumed. This then gives it the ability to block pain signals and hence, provide pain relief.

It doesn’t stop there though. Oxycodone also increases the release of Dopamine; a neurotransmitter responsible for affecting mood, among other things. The high amount of dopamine release is what leads to the feeling euphoria often experienced by its users.

More often than not, the rush or high caused by Oxycodone is said to be similar to that of heroin. So, what may have started as an innocent use in prescription drugs can plunge someone into an addiction they never saw coming.

How Does One Get Addicted?

Oxycodone WithdrawalA patient can easily get addicted to the prescription drug. If they feel as though the prescribed dose isn’t getting rid of the pain, they may opt to up their intake. This is especially likely to happen if the patient has been using the drug for a while.

That increase in dosage is just the beginning of many. Soon, they’ll find that they need a higher dosage than the one before for it to work. That is, for the drug to provide pain relief and help the user enter a state of Euphoria. This is what is called tolerance.

If they try to stop and realize that they can’t function normally without it, they are now dependent. Dependency can push the individual into lying to their doctor to get more prescription drugs. The withdrawal symptoms that the user is likely to experience may even push him/her to the wrong side of the law.

Soon, the person will discover that he needs a faster release to experience the rush. This may be due to the painful withdrawal symptoms or the need to find relief.

This is why individuals tend to crush Oxycodone pills. They also tend to dilute the crushed pills and inject them straight into their bloodstream. This need for fast relief, coupled with high dosage is what increases the risk of overdose death.

You’re probably wondering, why can’t they stop? Why can’t they just flash those pills down the toilet and walk away?

Well, as mentioned earlier, people addicted to Oxycodone experience what is often termed as withdrawal symptoms. Withdrawal symptoms related to Oxycodone use are known to be extremely painful and uncomfortable.

Oxycodone Withdrawal Symptoms

When a person using Oxycodone tries to stop using a drug or goes for long without it, they often experience withdrawal symptoms. When it comes to Oxycodone, the symptoms can be divided into two: early and later symptoms.

Early symptoms often happen within the first twenty-four hours of not ingesting the drug. They include:

  • Anxiety
  • Sweating
  • Muscle ache
  • Insomnia
  • Aching muscles

Later symptoms are usually after the first 24 hours of not ingesting the drug. They include:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • High blood pressure
  • Increased heartbeat
  • Cramping of the stomach
  • Shaking
  • Severe hydration

Oxycodone WithdrawalWithdrawal symptoms are often painful and uncomfortable, but not life-threatening. However, the severe hydration that comes from the loss of fluids can be extremely dangerous. If a loved one is experiencing severe withdrawal symptoms, it’s best to seek medical intervention.

Checking in a loved one that is addicted to therapy can have him/her in a more controlled environment. This way, when he/she feels the impulse to relapse they can’t. Also, therapy can help manage the withdrawal symptoms more safely and less painfully.

Usually, rehabilitation centres will have the person undergo detox. Detox is what will help get the Oxycodone out of the person’s body system.

Sometimes the centre will integrate the use of Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) as well. This is the use of medication to help manage the withdrawal symptoms and help improve the chances of long-term recovery.

In conclusion, Oxycodone withdrawal symptoms are indeed painful and uncomfortable. They make it extremely difficult for a person to stop using the drug. However, with therapy and a conducive environment, your loved one can overcome their life-threatening addiction.

Heroin Addiction

Heroin Addiction In California

Before we talk about the status of opioid and heroin addiction in California and the U.S., let’s first recall the essence of an opioid and how it becomes an addictive substance among teens and adults.

Nevertheless, if you are suffering from heroin addiction, then you need to seek medical assistance as early as today. Why? Because dependence on this illicit drug can lead to irreparable diseases, which can lead to death.

Recall – What Is Heroin?

Heroin AddictionHeroin is an illicit drug derived from morphine which is an opioid substance. It means opioids are derived from the seed pods of any kind of opium poppy plant. Alongside this, opioids are known for their pain-relieving benefits.

If you take any opioid substance, any pain you are feeling will be eased out and your breathing patterns are depressed.

Why is it addictive? It’s addictive because heroin and other opioids don’t only relieve pain but also induces a euphoric sensation. Also, when you take this drug without a prescription, then you’ll surely develop tolerance and later addiction to it.

How Bad Is Drug Addiction in California

Heroin AddictionIn 2019, California’s population is at 39.51 million, and 8.5% of them are suffering from drug addiction. Among the 3.35 million addicts, around 10% to 15% of them are enrolling in rehab recovery centers.

Despite the lower incidence of heroin addiction in California, still, there’s a growing number because most of these illicit drugs are shipped to the southern borders of this state. Most of the production of this illegal opioid is done in the central and south portions of the U.S.

With that, substance use disorder and heroin addiction is a pressing concern in this progressive state, and the various sectors are working together to bring these figures down.

Around 95% of the leaders in big states have worked together in mitigating drug addiction among Americans. If you think you are having symptoms of a heroin overdose, then seek professional help from an addiction specialist.

How Serious Is Drug Overdose and Heroin Addiction in the U.S. and California?

Here are some important statistical data describing the scenario of drug abuse and heroin addiction in the United States and in California in particular.

  • In 2018, there are about 67,367 deaths due to drug overdose in the U.S., which is equivalent to 20.7 for every 100,000 deaths.
  • In 2018, 70% of drug overdose deaths among Americans is caused by opioid addiction, which is around 14.6 for every 100,000 death counts.
  • In California, abusing opioids constitutes 45% of the overall drug overdose death count. From this count, death related to heroin addiction is around 778 in 2018.
  • In 2019, there are around 3,244 deaths due to opioid addiction in California.
  • Death related to a heroin overdose in California is around 35.9% in 2018.
  • The mortality rate of a heroin overdose in California is 8 per 100,000 Americans.

Overall, these reports tell us that we need to be cautious and enhance the awareness of the severe consequences when you abuse heroin and other opioid substances.

If you need further advice, you can talk to your nearby heroin addiction specialist today.

Heroin Addiction and Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome in California

When a pregnant woman abuses heroin or any opioid substance, then her baby is at risk for neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS) before giving birth. When the baby comes out, it’s when the withdrawal symptoms will be 100% evident.

You can see these withdrawal effects 24 to 48 hours after the child has come out. However, these effects may be on a delay as well, so you can observe it 5 to 10 days after giving birth.

Furthermore, here are the common symptoms of neonatal abstinence syndrome on the baby.

  • Baby cries a lot in a high-pitch voice
  • Seizure
  • Uncontrolled sweating
  • Feverish feeling
  • Stiff muscles
  • Frequent yawning
  • Clogged up nose
  • The baby exhibits poor breastfeeding action

In 2016, the incidence of NAS among Americans is 7 to 15.9 cases per 100,000 people. In California, the NAS rate is at 2.5 per 100,000 individuals.

If you want to keep your babies healthy before and after giving birth, then you must abstain from taking opioids unless prescribed by your doctor.

Spread of HIV and Heroin Addiction in California

Heroin AddictionAbusing heroin can be done in multiple ways such as ingesting, smoking, or injecting through your veins or under your skin. Alongside this, the injectable is one of the main culprits why there’s a rampant spread of HIV among the people in the U.S. and California.

Among males who are injecting heroin, the spread of HIV is around 4% of the total infection rate in California. For women, there is a 21.6% HIV transmission via heroin injection.

This scenario alarmed the government and other health organizations in California. They are planning ways on mitigating opioid and heroin abuse among teens and adults through constant education and controlling the prescription of opioid-derived medicines.

Heroin Addiction and the Spread of Hepatitis C (HCV) in the U.S. and California

Besides HIV, hepatitis C and B are the other diseases spread through injectable opioids in society. Below are some statistical reports on how serious this scenario is in California and the entire U.S.

  • In 2017, 6% of the new HCV reported cases were caused by injection drug use (IDU).
  • From 2013-2016, around 2.4 million people in the U.S. were diagnosed with HCV.
  • In California, around 103 new cases of HCV were found to use injectable drugs before getting the disease.
  • Currently, there are around 318,900 people in California with HCV.

Get Medical Help in Overcoming Your Heroin Addiction

Being under the influence of drugs is never easy since it negatively changes your lifestyle and behavior. If you want to achieve long-term sobriety from heroin addiction, then you need to seek medical treatment from a reliable rehab center in California.

Otherwise, you can talk to your nearby licensed and insured heroin addiction specialist today. They will give you customized treatment programs to address your substance use disorder.


Benzodiazepines Addiction 101

Despite the decrease in the prescription of this drug, over 30% of opioid-related overdose is due to benzodiazepine misuse and addiction. This drug is commonly used to treat anxiety and insomnia because of its sedative effect.

Once a person orally takes it, this drug dissolves in the blood and works on the brain to calm movements and thinking. Consequently, with the rising incidence of Benzodiazepine addiction, this article aims to give light to guide readers and patients on what to do.

How Bad Is Benzodiazepine Addiction in the United States?

Here are some statistical data showing the incidence of abusing this drug among the streets and residences in the U.S.

  • Benzodiazepines Addiction115 people die due to overdose with this drug
  • From 8.1 million, the number of people using this drug rose to 13.5 million, which is around a 67% increment from 1996 to 2013
  • Combining both opioids and benzodiazepines can lead to death due to lung and heart failure
  • Consumption of lorazepam increased from 1.1 kg to 3.6 kg for 100,000 people
  • 23% of those people dying from opioid abuse also have traces of abusing benzodiazepines
  • Addiction to this substance can lead to brain and lung failure, comatose, and death

Ideal Duration for Taking Benzodiazepines

Benzo AddictionA patient prescribed this medication will have an ideal treatment duration of three to four weeks. If any person uses this drug more than its prescribed duration, he will likely experience withdrawal symptoms after stopping from ingesting it.

So far, the safest duration of medicating with this drug is between one to two weeks. Within this period, the person will not develop any dependence on the drug. Furthermore, this prescribed medicine works best with behavioral therapies since any patient cannot solely depend on this substance to get well.

When Is Benzodiazepine Given To Patients?

This medicine has a tranquilizing effect on patients, so it soothes and relaxes their mind and senses. With the associated risks of using this medicine, the patient must strictly abide by his prescription bottle.

Specifically, this drug is given to people with the following conditions:

  • Insomnia
  • Seizures
  • Alleviating alcohol withdrawal symptoms
  • Anxiety
  • Panic attacks
  • Taken before a patient undergoes surgery

Specific Brands of Benzodiazepines in the Market

There are around 2,000 various types of benzodiazepines manufactured in the industry, yet only 15 are approved by the Food and Drug Agency (FDA). Below are the three classifications of this substance according to its intensity of the effect.

  • Very short impact: Halcion (triazolam) and Versed (Midazolam)
  • Short impact: Xanax (Alprazolam) and Ativan (Lorazepam)
  • Long-acting: Librium (Chlordiazepoxide) and Valium (Diazepam)

Here are other brand names of this drug in the market:

  • Niravam
  • Klonopin
  • Tranxene
  • Restoril

To avoid dependence and addiction, we highly recommend that you only use this medicine under a doctor’s prescription. If a person has benzodiazepine addiction, he should consult with an addiction specialist to have an early intervention.

What Causes A Person To Abuse Benzodiazepines?

Similar to other substances, a few variables are influencing a person to abuse and misuse this drug which includes the following:

  • Availability of this drug in the streets and pharmacies
  • Self-medication
  • Used to impair women which leads to rape and sexual harassment
  • Hereditary
  • Peer pressure
  • Low economic status
  • Lost of job or depression

These are the common culprits why a person is moved to abuse this drug, yet no matter the reason, it is best to seek external help from families and medical personnel.

Symptoms for Benzodiazepines Addiction

An individual misusing this drug will be having a difficult time determining if he is already dependent or addicted to the substance. With that, one can seek external help from their loved ones or from medical personnel in knowing one’s condition.

Nevertheless, here are some of the common signs when an individual has an addiction to benzos.

  • Bleary eyesight
  • Muscle weakness
  • Confusion or lightheadedness
  • Lethargy
  • Inability to speak well
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Comatose
  • Lack of motor coordination

Whereas, here are the serious adverse consequences of abusing this substance.

  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Sudden loss of weight
  • Frequent headaches
  • Aggravated anxiety issues

Once a person sees an early sign of addiction, it is strongly recommended that an early intervention must be given.

Withdrawal Symptoms of Benzodiazepine Addiction

When an individual takes this drug for more than four weeks, he will surely experience withdrawal symptoms upon stopping. The intensity of these withdrawal effects is greatly proportional to how long one is abusing it.

Here are the obvious adverse effects when a person stops using this substance:

  • Palpitations
  • Uncontrolled sweating
  • Headache
  • Seizures
  • Muscle aches
  • Fainting
  • Hallucination
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Highly irritable or frequent mood swings
  • Depression
  • Stomach pains
  • Confusion
  • Loss of appetite

Benzodiazepine Addiction Medication Processes

Any substance addiction has its respective medical treatment to cure the biological aspect of this condition. Here are some of the common medications given to patients.

  • Inducing vomiting or gastric lavage
  • Ingesting activated charcoal to absorb those toxins associated with abusing this substance. The usual side effects of this method are nausea, stomach cramps, and vomiting.
  • Letting the patient intake Flumazenil (Romazicon) which can counter the effects of benzodiazepines.

Testing for Benzodiazepine Addiction

BenzoThere are various means of testing the abuse of this substance among patients, and it must be conducted by a licensed doctor. Oftentimes, some patients and their families are quite hesitant to let their loved ones undergo evaluation regarding their substance addiction.

Here are some monitoring and evaluation measures for abusing benzos:

  • Measurement of blood pressure, blood oxygen levels, and pulse rate.
  • Urine test for determining any residues of benzodiazepines
  • Behavioral evaluation

When To Seek Treatment?

Once a person or their loved ones saw three to four signs of addiction, it is best to consult with your local addiction specialist or doctor. Early intervention with benzodiazepine addiction is great because the adverse effects can be treated as early as possible.

Likewise, you need to consider enrolling in a formal rehab treatment program to achieve sobriety from drug abuse. If you need further advice on this matter, feel free to reach out to any medical personnel specialized in treating addiction.

Opioid Addiction

12 Signs of Opioid Addiction

Opioid addiction is a common problem in the United States. Though opioids are typical prescription drugs used to treat pain, they also have high addictive potentials. Because of that, anyone who misuses the drugs can get addicted easily.

At the early stages of opioid addiction, the signs may be hard to spot. But as the addiction progresses, the signs become more obvious.

If you’re concerned that a friend or family member might be suffering from addiction to opioids, here are clear signs to watch out for.

1. Constantly looking for more opioids

Signs of Opioid AddictionIn rehab terms, this is known as drug-seeking behavior. Here, users become so caught up with getting more opioids. Eventually, it becomes a habit and a normal part of their daily routines.

Soon enough, their cravings for opioids become so intense that most of their time will be spent on taking the drugs. If they don’t seek help, their lives would revolve around the drugs entirely.

2. Losing interest in activities they used to enjoy

Another clear sign of addiction is when users no longer enjoy their hobbies and recreation. Drug-seeking behavior takes over, so they derive less happiness and satisfaction from their passions.

Eventually, they would not want to do the activities they used to love doing so much. The euphoric highs they get from opioids will become their only passion and obsession.

3. Abandoning responsibilities at home and at work

In the early stages of opioid addiction, users may still do their jobs properly and have a pretty normal home life. Later on, though, they will begin to neglect those responsibilities. They would instead pour more time and effort into getting that drug fix.

Pretty soon, they could end up being fired from their jobs and distancing themselves from their families.

4. Lying about their prescriptions

Opioid Addiction FAQsThere are many ways that users show this kind of behavior. For example, they may keep hidden supplies of opioids so they can take more. Or they could keep taking the drugs even after their prescriptions have ended. In both cases, they would often be dishonest to anyone who asks how their medications are going.

Some users may intentionally “lose” their prescriptions so they can get new ones. That way, they can get more opioids legally. Some would even “borrow” other people’s medications.

5. Going to different doctors to get extra prescriptions

This practice is also known as “doctor shopping.” To get more opioids, some users would go to more than one doctor to get lots of prescriptions. That way, they can have as many doses of the drugs as they want.

Another technique is when users present to the hospital with fake symptoms. Here, their goal is the same: to get extra prescriptions.

6. Hanging out more with a different sets of people

By itself, this behavior is not a problem at all. But in the context of opioid addiction, it’s common for users to hang out more with friends who are also drug users.

In turn, they would distance themselves from their usual communities. Eventually, their old friends would notice this change as well.

7. Frequent mood swings

Mood SwingsOpioid addiction also causes changes in users’ moods. First, they’re happy, then next thing you know, they suddenly become aggressive. Then, they’re back to normal again.

Unless they are diagnosed with bipolar disorder or other mental illnesses that cause frequent mood swings, the drugs are causing it. Especially if the mood swings happen regularly.

These random changes in mood also occur for no apparent reason. Thus, loved ones may find it really hard to handle this kind of behavior.

8. Not being able to function normally without opioids

At some point during the progress of addiction, users would absolutely need to take opioids to go on with daily life. If not, they would feel like something important is missing from their bodies.

If they try not to take opioids for one day, withdrawal symptoms take hold. These range from mildly unpleasant to severely unbearable, depending on the level of addiction. These withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Anxiety
  • Irritability
  • Insomnia
  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal pain
  • Diarrhea
  • Chills
  • Tremors

What’s worse is these symptoms don’t go away easily. On average, they last for three to five days, but sometimes they can last for as long as ten days.

9. Neglecting personal hygiene

Personal HygieneUsers addicted to opioids also forget to take care of themselves. As most of their time and energy is spent on taking the drugs, even keeping themselves clean is not appealing anymore.

They get their main sense of satisfaction from the highs produced by taking opioids. With that, even basic habits like personal grooming become unimportant to them.

10. Feeling tired and sad nearly all the time

Opioid addiction sucks the life out of users. Thus, most of the time, they have negative emotions running through them. They would always feel tired, not wanting to do anything productive. They would also feel sad often, especially whenever they realize how much their lives have spiraled out of control.

11. Getting involved in crime

Sometimes, users would resort to criminal acts to get their daily fill of opioids. They may steal the drugs directly from pharmacies or steal money from others to buy more drugs.

Their new groups of friends could also be members of gangs or crime syndicates. With that, they would tend to join in those illegal activities as well.

12. Poor decision-making skills

Opioid addiction affects the brain greatly. Users’ brains get so used to the feelings of euphoria that even higher-order thinking skills become severely affected.

Soon enough, users could not make sound decisions. And the decisions they do make may put themselves and the people around them in danger.

Opioid addiction is a huge problem for anyone experiencing it. But there is hope for them. If you have a friend or loved one suffering from this addiction, have them consult a recovery professional. That’s the best option to get their lives back together.

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