Opioids and Opiates Addiction Symptoms, Signs & Side Effects
In urban areas like Cleveland, Columbus and Cincinnati, opioid addiction is a significant concern. This is also true for the entire state of Ohio as well as the entire nation of the United States of America. When a person is using opioids, unfortunately, they will become physically dependent upon the drug. It can also lead to overdoses and deaths in many cases, particularly with illegal street drugs like heroin. However, legal prescription opioids like oxycodone, hydrocodone, morphine and codeine can be just as dangerous when they are abused. If you are unfamiliar with opioid and opiate addiction symptoms or opioid and opiate addiction signs, we will provide you with an overview below.
Side Effects of Opioid Use
There are many different side effects to be aware of that come with opioid use. This is true even of those who are using these drugs specifically as prescribed by their doctors. Opioid analgesic side effects do include pain relief, but when these drugs bind to the opioid receptors that are found in the central nervous system, they will create a sense of euphoria or a rush of pleasure. In many cases, once this wears off, an intense drowsiness or relaxation may be experienced.
Some of the other common side effects of opiate use include:
- Heaviness of extremities
- Nodding off periodically
- Small pupils
- Vomiting and nausea
Behavioral changes can also be present when a person is using opioids. These side effects may be relatively mild in some people and moderate or severe in others. It depends on the opioid the person is taking, the amount and frequency with which they are taking it, the person’s overall physical health, the person’s metabolism and age, etc.
Opioid and Opiate Addiction Symptoms
Are there symptoms associated with long-term opioid abuse? Yes. In the short-term, the side effects are primarily the sense of euphoria, drowsiness and gastrointestinal issues. However, in the long-term the symptoms of opioid use can change. In many cases, when a person uses opioids and opiates in the long term, they will develop an addiction. This is especially true if the person has been abusing opioids.
In many cases, those who experience opioid and opiate addiction will feel the negative effects of the drug on their lives, and yet, they will be unable to stop using the drug. This is because addiction is a disease, and it must be treated. If you had cancer or diabetes, you would ask for help. Addiction is just the same. People who are affected by opioid and opiate addiction symptoms must seek treatment from facilities in Ohio like The Recovery Village Columbus.
Those who are experience opioid and opiate addiction will also be experiencing a physical dependence on opioids and opiates. This happens when a person’s body and brain has become dependent on the substance to the point where withdrawal symptoms are present when it is stopped.
Opioid and Opiate Addiction Signs
How can you tell if someone you love is experiencing an opioid or opiate addiction? Fortunately, there are many signs to be on the lookout for. If you know the signs, you can encourage your loved ones to get the help that they need.
Opioid and opiate addiction signs may include:
- Engaging in dangerous or risky behaviors to obtain more opioids
- Being unsuccessful when trying to stop using opioids
- Stealing, lying or exhibiting other uncharacteristic behavior
- Isolating or having problems in relationships
- Having a poor work or school performance
- Having financial issues
- Faking symptoms to obtain prescriptions
- Doctor shopping or pharmacy shopping to obtain more than one prescription
The symptoms of opioid dependence and opioid addiction are different, although they will intersect in many cases. It’s important to understand that if you are experiencing an opiate or opioid addiction, you need to seek treatment as soon as possible.
- Benyamin, Ramsin et al. “Opioid complications and side effects.” Pain physician, March 11, 2008. Accessed April 25, 2021.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Know the Signs and Get Help for Opioid Addiction.” December 21, 2020. Accessed April 25, 2021.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Opioid Basics.” March 16, 2021. Accessed April 25, 2021.
- Medlineplus.gov. “Opioid Misuse and Addiction.” National Institutes of Health, April 18, 2018. Accessed April 25, 2021.
Medical Disclaimer: The Recovery Village Columbus aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with a substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider.