Opiates are powerful painkillers that come from the opium poppy. Opiates come in varying strengths and formulas. Some provide instant relief and are short-acting, while others are meant for long-term use. Still, all opiates work in the same way in the brain to produce similar effects, and so all can result in a painkiller addiction. When this occurs, detox and ongoing treatment are required.
The Different Kinds of Opiates
Opiates are drugs that contain morphine. Morphine occurs naturally in the opium poppy, but it can also be created artificially.
Medical professionals consider morphine the “gold standard” of painkillers. For hundreds of years, people all over the world have relied on morphine to relieve pain, reduce a cough, and stop diarrhea.
Another opiate painkiller is codeine, which was discovered in 1832 but has gone on to become the most commonly prescribed drug in the world.
Other powerful opiates include Fentanyl and Dilaudid. Opiates come in tablet, suppository, liquid, patch, and injectable form.
Not all opiates are legal. Heroin, for example, comes from the opium poppy and is more powerful and addictive than morphine.
All opiate painkillers are highly addictive. They produce tolerance and physical dependency and create severe withdrawal symptoms. The opiates of today are even more powerful than those created long ago, which opiate addiction far more prevalent today than at any time in the past.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) reports that between 26.4 million and 36 million people around the world abuse opiate drugs. The New York Times reported recently that opioids are responsible for more deaths than any other medication or drug.
The Dangers of Opiates
Some drugs blend an opiate with an over-the-counter medicine, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen. These “partial synthetics” are called opioids. Like opiates, opioids come in many forms. Common opioids include Vicodin, OxyContin, and Percocet.
While it might seem that opioids are less dangerous than opiates, this is not the case. Some people who die from an overdose of opioids actually die from the liver toxicity in the over-the-counter medicine.
From prescription painkillers to heroin, opiates can produce withdrawal symptoms just hours after the last dose. These symptoms can last for up to weeks.
While unassisted withdrawal may not be life-threatening, withdrawal symptoms are often so uncomfortable that relapse becomes likely. Therapy, sometime medically assisted, can help make relapse less likely.
Opiate withdrawal symptoms include:
- Muscle cramping
- Opiate cravings
Opiate Detox in Kentucky: The First Step in Treatment
Addiction is a chronic disease, with both physical and emotional side effects and symptoms. With this in mind, treatment must be comprehensive.
Comprehensive treatment starts with medical detox, a relatively short period of time when the patient is first coming off the addictive drug. Without proper supervision, relapse during the detox period is probable.
Opiate Detox followed by professional counseling, patient education, family and individual therapy, and ongoing support can help people to stop using drugs and maintain their sobriety.
Getting Help At Our Opiate Detox In Kentucky
JourneyPure Bowling Green helps people get sober every day. Whether your problem began with a legitimate prescription or you started abusing painkillers casually, JourneyPure Bowling Green can help.
Most medical experts agree that long-term individualized care in an inpatient setting offers the best treatment outcomes. Our staff provides a comprehensive evaluation that takes into account all aspects of the painkiller addiction. We will design a recovery plan customized for your needs that draws from behavioral and psychiatric therapies, 12-Step care, and adventure therapy to remind you how fun sober living can be.
Call JourneyPure Bowling Green for more information and find your path to freedom.