Everyone knows that addiction is a very real problem affecting the physical health, mental health, and social relationships of millions of people around the world. Opiates are one of the fastest growing categories of substances of abuse related to addiction.
In fact, the problem has grown so large that it has reached epidemic proportions in the United States. However there are still many misconceptions about addiction that prevent many people from receiving the treatment they need. One such misconception is that opiate addiction makes you a bad person.
What is Addiction?
The first thing you need to know to understand why opiate addiction does not make you a bad person is what addiction is. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, scientific studies have shown addiction to be a chronic disease that affects brain chemistry and function. It changes how people think and act. These changes are a direct result of a disease that needs professional treatment. Addiction is not a choice or a moral failing.
How do Opiates Affect the Brain?
Every addiction affects the brain in different ways. Opiates bond to chemical receptors in the brain that are responsible for transmitting pain and reward signals.The mental effects of this include:
- Reduced pain
- Depression of the central nervous system
- Difficulty performing physical tasks
These effects can be very strong depending on the dosage used. While this is a good thing for those prescribed opiates for pain relief, it is also a major contributor to opiate abuse and addiction. Professional treatment is the best way to deal with opiate addiction and can be found by calling 800-442-6158 Who Answers? .
Dependence, Tolerance, and How They Relate to Addiction
Tolerance is a sign of the body getting used to a drug’s effects. Essentially you need more and more of the drug to have the same effect. Dependence occurs when the drug use has gone on long enough or has been used in sufficient quantity to make the brain or body believe that it cannot function without the drug.
In the case of opiates, this threshold can be reached very quickly and shows why opiate addiction is so widespread and dangerous. Getting treatment is the best way to avoid the ever increasing dangers of an addiction that develops from tolerance and dependence.
Withdrawal and How it Complicates Addiction
Once dependence sets in, trying to stop opiate use will result in withdrawal. Opiate withdrawal is extremely unpleasant. According to the Library of Medicine, some of the symptoms of opiate withdrawal include:
- Muscle and joint pain
These symptoms occur at extreme levels, and make stopping without professional treatment all but impossible. This shows that you are not solely responsible for your opiate addiction, nor are you a bad person for suffering from it.
Finding Opiate Addiction Treatment
Once you understand that opiate addiction doesn’t make you a bad person and that it is a disease that needs treatment, the next step is to get that treatment and begin recovering. Finding the best treatment options for you is easy. Simply call 800-442-6158 Who Answers? and our dedicated counselors will assist you. Begin your drug free life today.