What are Opiate Addiction

Opiates, generally referred to as narcotics, are typically used for pain relief and to generate sleep. These drugs are initially derived from the seeds of poppy plants. Most opiates are synthetic, but some are in natural forms like morphine and opium. Overusing opiates can lead to opiate addiction.

This drug class elicits an intense sense of euphoria in addition to pain-relieving properties, which makes them highly addictive. Numerous people who present with pain disorders lead to opiate addiction to pharmaceutical opiates such as hydrocodone and oxycodone later on. The overuse of these opiates results in many adverse problems for the user. Prolonged use of opioids results in the incapacity of the brain to naturally elicit endorphins, which are the body’s natural painkillers. When the body is incapable of adequately regulating and managing pain, an opiate user may formulate an increased reliance on the drug as the opiates are used to manage pain and elicit an all-around sense of happiness and contentment. Over a prolonged time, a person will need more of the substance to obtain the exact level of high they first experienced. This is known as tolerance.

Suppose an opiate addict agrees to stop taking opiates. In that case, their body will start to go through withdrawal, a cluster of highly unpleasant signs that may result in the user seeking additional opiates to relieve these very nasty feelings. However, with an appropriate inpatient treatment program and detoxification, people addicted to opiates can live a sober life.

What Are the Causes Of Opiate Addiction?

Now that you know what is opiate addiction let’s understand the causes of this addiction. Although anyone can come to be an opioid addict, there are several factors that have been hypothesized as reasons for the addiction. These include:


A study has suggested that some people are genetically predisposed to form an opiate addiction. People with families addicted to opiates appear to be more inclined to develop an opiate addiction than those without a family past of the disorder.


One theory indicates that some people do not elicit enough natural endorphins in their brains, which can influence their mood. This chemical inequality may lead to opiate use to cope with negative feelings resulting in this imbalance.


For particular individuals, it has been hypothesized that exposure to opiates can direct addiction. Due to the joy, decreased negative mood, and anxiety, people may find that they can better process in social and professional environments when using opiates. It can lead to the beginning of an opiate addiction because people believe they are incapable of functioning without the substance.


Finally, environmental aspects likely play a role in the development of opiate dependence. It has been hypothesized that somebody may model the usage of opiates in a person’s life. One likelihood is that a parent or other family member living with the person may become addicted to opiates after taking them for pain control. If these relative proceeds to use the opiate after the pain has settled in front of the person or uses them to manage the stressors, an individual in question may think that this is an acceptable form of coping with stressors in life.

There is no single reason for opiate addiction, but it is thought that a mixture of multiple factors induces it.

How To Recover From Opiate Addiction?

Medication For Opiate Addiction 

The signs of withdrawal are a significant reason for relapse and further drug abuse. But drugs can enable you through opioid withdrawal and deter symptoms. After the initial detox, you are at risk for relapse. Specialists say social and psychological characteristics are the major drivers that could push you back to using. Pressure and situations that remind the brain of the pleasure the drug can get are common triggers. Life-long and successful therapy to keep opioid-free during opioid recovery usually involves long-term medication and talk therapy or counseling programs.


Methadone, such as Dolophine and Methadose, is a long-acting opioid that impacts the same parts of your brain as the drug you are having difficulty with, but it does not get you high. You can take it daily, but you must visit a clinic to get it. The accurate dose prevents withdrawal signs and eases drug cravings.


Buprenorphine is another drug that is ratified for the treatment of opioid dependence. It strikes the same receptors in the brain but not as profoundly. As a result, it has less hazard of lethal overdose, so specialists often favor it. It is also accessible in combination with naloxone.


Naltrexone blocks opiate receptors. Contrary to buprenorphine or methadone, it does not ease withdrawal signs or cravings. But you cannot get high if you take drugs with it. Naltrexone functions best as part of a comprehensive recovery opiate withdrawal treatment program.

Counseling and Behavioral Therapies 

The likelihood of beating narcotic addiction is better with long-term therapy comprising medications and some form of behavioral or counseling therapy. This is called MAT (medication-assisted treatment).

Counseling with a competent health professional enables you to deal with any social or personal problems that may lead to addiction or worsen it. They are: 

  • The feelings of self-worth
  • People around the person who uses drugs or alcohol. 
  • Problems at work or home

The treatment program may comprise one or more of these:

  • Motivational interviewing helps people identify reasons they might not want to change their behavior.
  • CBT (Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy) shows the person why they might be taking drugs, builds the belief that the person can address the problems, and teaches them to cope with struggles more effectively.
  • Contingency management utilizes rewards or incentives to help you meet objectives like sticking with medications or attending treatment.
  • Family therapy gets people who care about the person to strengthen the treatment.
  • 12-step groups comprise defined goals like attending meetings or getting a sponsor.
  • Support groups introduce the person to people who know from experience what they are going through. They can give their tips for recovery and help the person deal with setbacks.

Residential Treatment

With residential opiate addiction treatment center programs, the person lives with people who are in identical situations and support each other through healing. Some clinics also offer inpatient programs for those who have medical conditions. These treatments contain several kinds of behavioral or counseling therapy and medications.

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