The opioid crisis is serious and devastating to families across the country. It has claimed the lives of over 400,000 people between 1999-2018, according to the Center for Disease Control (CDC). The trouble with abuse of this drug is that it can begin by people taking their medicine as prescribed by doctors. What began as necessary pain relief can develop into full dependency.
Keep reading to learn more about the warning signs that you or a loved one has slipped from use to abuse of opioids.
Why do People Abuse Opioids?
Opioids relieve pain and make you feel good. To someone in extreme, constant pain, this medicine is crucial. Experiencing pain at that level can have lasting effects on someone’s brain. However, over time, your brain and body form a habit. This physical and psychological dependence tricks your brain into thinking that continued use is needed for your survival.
Most dosages start off low. Your body adapts to the dosage level and will soon require more to get the same response. Read our article here to learn about what opioid addiction is.
Avoiding Opioid Addiction
Pain management is sometimes necessary. Make sure to discuss your pain with your medical doctor. They may be able to suggest alternative options so you can avoid opioid use altogether. If using opioids is necessary, they will go over timings, dosage, and when to begin weaning off of the medicine so you can go back to life without them. Finding a balance between use and going too far begins with honest and open communication.
The Signs of Opioid Addiction
The signs of addiction pop out when someone makes big changes in their behavior, including:
- Avoiding friends and family
- Losing interest in favorite activities
- Not bathing
- Being tired all the time
- Over or undereating
- Being nervous and “on-edge”
- Mood swings
- Irregular sleep patterns
- Legal trouble
What to Do if You Think You or a Loved One is Addicted?
Seek help with a medical professional quickly. Ask your physician for medicines to help you cope with addiction. There are also several treatment facilities that can be great resources. Surrounding the person with supportive, sober people can be helpful.
Here at the Harmony Haus, we provide a sober environment for men to support each other on their recovery journeys. Our home is full of guys who have similar experiences helping each other to live their best lives.