Analgesic Abuse Warning Signs

June 23, 2012 0 Comments

Analgesic or pain reliever abuse is considered as of the leading serious concerns in the society. One of the most potent analgesic is opioid which is often taken abusively. Opioids are categorized into three classes, namely, naturally occurring opioids such as morphine and opium, semi-synthetic opioids like heroin, oxycodone, oxymorphone, and hydrocodone, and synthetic opioids such as buprenorphine, methadone, fentanyl, codeine, levorphanol, alfentanil, meperidine, and propoxyphene.

According to statistics, just under ten percent of the US population abuses opiates at one point in their lifetime. Americans constitute 4.6% of the world’s population, but consume around 80% of the world’s opioid source. This data is a well deserved national problem and measures are currently being undertaken to end opioid addiction.

Opioids have the ability to bind to and affect opiate receptors in the cell membrane. The outcomes of taking these drugs are a profound feeling of pleasure or euphoria, relaxation, relief of pain and anxiety, coma if taken in very high doses, and even early death. Unlike natural euphoria in which a person feels extremely happy because of a worthwhile event or happening around him, this form of happiness has nothing to do with what’s happening around him but due to an effect of the drug altering the brain’s senses. That is why for many addicted individuals, giving up is extremely hard to do.

Effects of opioid use may last between 4-6 hours and after it has lapsed, withdrawal symptoms follow which may include pain, anxiety, vomiting, and pain. Opium addiction withdrawal can be so severe that those dependent on the drug would go to great lengths to acquire the drug again. This time, higher doses are used to get the desired satisfying outcome.

Blurred speech, constricted eye pupils and loss of body coordination are common opium abuse symptoms. People dependent on opiates have a hard time socializing because they do not care about what’s going on around them. Their state of mind is such that they are unaware to their environment and would rather be left alone. Constant use of pain-killer and changing it to increasing dosages after experiencing tolerance to the drug is also a form of opiate abuse. Many of opiate junkies actually received these drugs from a medical professional. It’s for a truth indeed why at some point in their lives, US citizens abuses optiates.

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