Drug addiction nationwide has been on the increase for years, with a large percentage of abusers using prescription drugs rather than heroin or other types of drugs. In recent years, experts have become increasingly concerned about the abuse of opiates and opioids. But not everyone understands the differences of opioid vs opiate.
Opiates are derived directly from the poppy plant, which is grown in a variety of dry, warm climates. The drugs created directly from the poppy plant include opium, codeine and morphine. Drugs derived directly from poppy flowers have been used for centuries as painkillers and for recreation.
Opioids, on the other hand, refer to any substance that binds a person’s brain opioid receptors. That can include opiates, but also includes a variety of synthetic substances that are generally created in a laboratory. Opioids, other than opiates, include hydrocodone, oxycodone, methadone and fentanyl.
While the terms are frequently used interchangeably, they shouldn’t be. Medical experts caution that all opiates are opioids, but not all opioids are opiates. Both types of substances are beneficial when used correctly, but both can also pose serious hazards when abused.
The chemical differences between opiates and opioids are clear, and so are the net results of overusing either of the two. Misusing either opiates or opioids can quickly lead to a dependence on the drug of choice.
Experts also caution that continuing to use an opioid will, in most cases, result in building a tolerance to the drug used. That simply means it will take more of the drug to create the same effect. This is a common occurrence when a prescription painkiller is taken for an extended period.
Patients who feel an increasing need for an opioid will frequently do whatever it takes to obtain additional supplies of the drug. That can mean double doctoring or looking for other alternative sources of the drug. Substitutions may be made if the original drug is not obtained. In some cases, the drug substituted will be heroin.
If an individual answers yes to two or three of these questions, there is a good chance they’ve become addicted to the drug being used and it’s time to explore treatment options.
Options for opiate versus opioid addiction are pretty much the same. Drug abuse professionals at Lake Wellness Center recognize the overall impact drug use has on a person’s life and work with patients and their loved ones to develop strategies to overcome the overuse.
The first problem anyone addicted to opioids needs to face is withdrawal. Since the symptoms of withdrawal can be life-threatening, it’s important to have professional medical help to get through the process.
Users will begin noticing symptoms roughly 12 hours after the last use of the drug. Things won’t get better right away, because it takes anywhere from one to four weeks for the withdrawal process to be completed. The worst symptoms (occurring during the acute withdrawal stage) should be over in less than a week.
People going through withdrawal generally suffer significant physical symptoms during the first few days, which is why having professionals monitor their progress is so important. Once the acute withdrawal stage is over, the symptoms tend to be emotional rather than physical.
Professional care, such as that offered by Lake Wellness Center, is important throughout the process. Every person’s experience will be somewhat different. Lake Wellness Center experts observe the individual’s symptoms and take the most appropriate steps to make sure every patient is safe throughout the opioid treatment program withdrawal process.
Anyone seeking treatment for the overuse of opioids or opiates is encouraged to look at the available treatment options before selecting one. Clinics providing opiate addiction treatment are located throughout the area.
When the affected person or a loved one recognizes the need for an opioid treatment program, the next step is to contact the provider for advice and discuss various treatment options. During the initial conversation, there are a couple of things to find out about those options.
It’s important that each patient’s treatment plan be individualized to meet their specific needs and goals. Far too many treatment programs fail to recognize that one-size-fits-all plans are less likely to succeed than unique plans devised for each patient.
The location of the treatment center is also important, as most people are balancing personal as well as work or academic schedules. In some cases, the patient will want their treatment provider to be located close to home, while others may find it more convenient to work with providers in a center that’s located close to work or school locations.
Family members or other loved ones need to be included in the treatment protocols? The most successful treatment plans opiate treatment plans involve the patient’s support systems to better ensure successful outcomes.
The most important step for anyone needing treatment for opioid addiction is to make that first contact with a treatment center. Once that first call is made, it’s easier to move forward and develop a plan to overcome the addictive behavior. For immediate assistance, contact the experts now.