04 Nov Consequences of Opioid Addiction – Side Effects on Health
Are you feeling upset about life lately? Do you feel your life is not in your control? Do you feel you’re getting addicted to a substance?
Have you felt like you want to give up substance addiction but are not able to? If these are the some questions you keep thinking about, consult a deaddiction center in Patna, Dr. Vivek Pratap Singh.
What are Opioids?
Opioids are narcotics that help relieve pain in typical cases. The physician might prescribe these opioids for
- Chronic pain
- Post surgery pain
However, taking opioids for a long time can have a number of risk factors associated with it.
If an individual is taking a prescribed opioid, they should make sure they don’t take it in higher doses than prescribed.
Most individuals make this mistake, and start developing dependency. Gradually, they start taking higher doses to reach a high and the body develops tolerance.
Opioid use disorder is termed as inability to stop taking opioids even after having a knowledge of the harmful consequences.
Consequences of Opioid Addiction is a condition wherein the pleasurable activity turns into a survival mechanism.
Something the body or mind can’t live without. And when this develops, it’s a problem no one is prepared to deal with.
Signs of Substance Abuse
The typical signs and symptoms of substance abuse will be apparent clinically.
At first, a person can hide their addiction but slowly and gradually it reaches to a point they can’t control their cravings. For example,
- Mood changes or swings
- Disheveled appearance
- Losing interest in hobbies
- Spending time alone
- Detaching oneself from friends and family
- Changes in eating habits
- Changes in sleeping
- Nervous or cranky
- Depressive mood
- Getting in trouble with law
The person undergoing substance abuse might start lying and hiding things. They will get into financial trouble and would start stealing or committing small crimes to fulfill their cravings.
Opioids are known to release happy endorphins from the brain that tends to suppress the pain receptors. It stimulates receptors that increase feelings of pleasure, and happiness.
As the effect of the drug wears off, the individual is left craving for those feelings and thus starts a never ending chain of chasing these feelings. So, what drug releases dopamine?
There are a number of drugs that release dopamine such as heroine, and cocaine. Cocaine prevents the brain’s dopamine signal from turning off resulting in increased dopamine release.
It is known as the third most damaging drug to the body interfering with the chemical receptors in the brain.
Other drugs like barbiturates, nicotine and alcohol have also shown to increase dopamine levels by turning on the brain’s reward system.
Opioid Addiction Risk Factors
The Consequences of Opioid Addiction is a very common norm in today’s society. A lot of adolescents are addicted to smoking tobacco and marijuana.
Among these, some do it under peer pressure while others want to escape the harsh realities of life. For example some of the risk factors are
- Family history of substance abuse
- Abusive household
- Young age
- Involving with the wrong kind of people
- Mental disorder history
- Risk taking behavior
- Prior drug or alcohol use history
If there has been child abuse in the past, or neglect associated with taking care of the child it leads to children developing coping mechanisms in the form of substance abuse.
They think of it as a release for their body after whatever they have gone through.
At the same time if they have grown up watching their parents abusing alcohol or any kind of substance they think it is okay to develop such behavior.
Individuals with mental disorders are more likely to develop dependence on substances. Their symptoms make them aversive towards living life.
Thus, to help them feel better, they rely on substances and alcohol. The high they get from these substances aids them to survive the hurdles thrown at them by life.
The short term effects of opioid use are
- Slowed breathing
At times, these short term effects can escalate to medical emergencies with manifestation of symptoms like
- Difficulty breathing
- Cyanosis of fingers and lips
- Pinpoint pupils
People take Consequences of Opioid Addiction for the feelings of euphoria and the temporary relief it provides from the usual monotony of life.
Although, after the wearing of the drug, the people keep on running after this feeling thus abusing the drug again and again.
In some cases, taking the drug to reach the level of high that has already increased due to the body’s tolerance level they overdose on the drug. This is the most common complication with substance use disorder.
Long-term Opioid use Effects
Using Consequences of Opioid Addiction chronically can leave the body with a range of harmful long term effects. Opioids target a lot of the body’s organs with the harmful toxins inside them. For example,
- Eating disorders
- Tooth decay
It affects the gastrointestinal system, the reproductive system leading to pregnancy loss at times. It increases your risk of brain injury with increased tendency of falls and fractures.
In fact, taking opioids for a long time reduces the natural ability to cope with pain and presents with heightened sensitivity to pain. It is also associated with
- Central sleep apnea where the body can’t remember to breathe while sleeping
- Adrenal insufficiency causing reduced release of cortisol
- Osteoporosis that is body becomes prone to fractures
- Tremors, involuntary spasms of hand and feet
- It decreases production of sex hormones like estrogen and progesterone
Other cardiovascular complications like
- Decreased blood pressure
- Irregular heartbeats called arrhythmias
- Bowel disorders like constipation
Chronic Consequences of Opioid Addiction leads to development of cancer cells and increases the susceptibility of getting cancer. Coping with opioid use is hard and one should be wary of its harmful effects on the body.
Opioid use disorder can be confirmed when
- An individual has tried cutting back on the drug but has been unsuccessful in the attempts.
- You frequently crave the drug
- It has interfered with your school or work activities, and also affected you socially
- You think about ways how to get opioids
- You need larger and larger doses of opioids for the same effects
What can be done for opioid use disorder?
Opioid use causes a variety of physical symptoms. Just like that, stopping the substance abuse leads to withdrawal symptoms.
That way they don’t have to experience the extreme level of severity of drug withdrawal. And the body’s tolerance level slowly decreases.
Although, some people tend to go cold turkey by stopping the use altogether. They go through unbearable symptoms and the chance of relapsing is more.
Every drug abuser has a different story with different emotional trauma. So, the symptoms and withdrawal emotions are also varied. However, the typical symptoms one goes through are
- Drug cravings
- Abdominal pain
- Bowel movement changes
- Nausea or vomiting
- Feeling cold
In severe cases, they can even experience neurological symptoms such as
Surviving these symptoms is not an easy task. But, if one survives this, they can say they already won the hardest part.
During this detoxification process, the drug craving is on the peak and chances of relapse are too high.
Monitoring the condition of the particular individual and ensuring they don’t harm themselves is very important. The rehabilitation center in Patna, Dr. Vivek Pratap Singh is well-equipped to deal with it.
There are a variety of treatment programs that offer
- Individual therapies
- Individual attention on feelings and reasons they turned to drug abuse
Along with individual therapies, a lot of rehabilitation centers offer family therapy.
Because during this time, the families and close friends also need hope and emotional support that their loved one is gonna come out of this unscarred.
Sometimes, the changed behavior of a person affects the family and they can’t comprehend how to react.
This therapy helps them understand the emotions they are going through and at the same time helps the family navigate through their fears and inhibitions.
It focuses mainly on how to deal with the patient without getting frustrated or being insensitive towards their feelings and needs.
There are medications like buprenorphine and methadone to relieve the severe withdrawal symptoms. Taking these medications can help one survive the withdrawal symptoms.
In case of an opioid withdrawal, naloxone is the drug prescribed. Substance use disorder can cause a majority of long term and short term effects that results in our body suffering.
The best Deaddiction Center in Patna, Dr. Vivek Pratap Singh specializes in dealing with these kinds of circumstances. By going to him, you should know you’re in safe hands.