What is an Opioid and Opiate Use Disorder?

Opioid and opiate addiction treatment options are available. Opioids and opiates overlap, but are not interchangeable. Opioids are chemicals that are used to reduce pain by affecting opioid receptors on the nerve cells in the brain and body. These include all types: natural, synthetic, and semi-synthetic. Opiates are the opioids derived from natural chemicals, including codeine, morphine and heroin.

As such, opioid use disorder – also known as opioid abuse – more broadly includes opiate use disorder. All opioids are highly addictive. Many are originally prescribed by a doctor, but they are often misused for feelings of pleasure or used for a longer period of time than intended. Once a user becomes unable to stop using an opioid or opiate, and that substance interferes with professional and social commitments, it is time to seek help for opioid use disorder.

What Are the Symptoms of Opioid and Opiate Abuse?

If you believe that you, a friend, or loved one might suffer from opioid use disorder, we recommend looking for a combination of some of the following symptoms:

  • Less social activity and avoiding close friends and family
  • Or, changing their social circle to entirely new friends
  • Dramatic mood shifts
  • Lack of energy
  • Depression
  • Nervousness or short temper
  • Less interest in normal activities
  • Not keeping up their personal grooming
  • Dramatic changes in appetite
  • High energy levels accompanied by rapid, nonsensical speech
  • Extreme changes in sleep patterns
  • Missing time at work, school, or other commitments and appointments
  • Sudden financial hardship
  • Legal troubles that did not previously exist
  • Abdominal pain
  • Tremors or shaking
  • Feeling unusually cold

What are the Long-Term Effects of an Opioid Use Disorder?

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One important thing to note is that opioid use disorder carries a high risk of overdose, so the longer someone continues to abuse opioids and opiates, the more at risk they are of serious problems. Additionally, prolonged abuse can lead to:

  • Increased tolerance. Whatever the opioid or opiate someone is abusing, they will develop higher tolerance over time, so they will take higher and higher amounts.
  • Physical dependence. Opioid addiction makes a person’s body adjust to receiving the euphoric feeling in nerve cells; once that stops, they can experience serious withdrawal symptoms, such as pain in their bones and muscles, cold flashes with goose bumps (known as “cold turkey”), diarrhea, vomiting, insomnia, and negative mood effects.
  • Weakened immune system. Prolonged abuse of opioids and opiates puts the user at higher risk of infectious diseases.
  • Increased risk of HIV and hepatitis. These are some of the potential negative effects of taking opioids intravenously.
  • The combination of changing the brain structure and the need for more opioids has serious psychological effects.
  • Clogged blood vessels or collapsed veins. By interfering with blood flow, opioids can lead to more serious health problems.
  • Risk of choking. This is a common result of opioid abuse, and one that can lead to overdose.

If you or a loved one are suffering from opiate addiction, give our treatment center a call right now at .

Our Opioid and Opiate Addiction Treatment Center Options

There are a number of factors to consider when looking at our opioid and opiate addiction treatment options. Some things to consider include which opioid the patient is addicted to, how long the addiction has lasted, and what the effects have been. We use this context to create personalized treatment plans from the following options:

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy. This is a popular option for substance abuse treatment because it helps the patient identify when, where, and why they might abuse the substance and develop an approach to cope with these situations.
  • Group therapy. Oakvine has vast experience treating opioid and opiate use disorder, and we can introduce other patients in recovery to build support groups that help you get better each day.
  • Family therapy. One of the normal symptoms of long-term opioid abuse is turning your back on family members. We can help repair those relationships. We also believe it’s important to educate your family so they are willing to support you in any way they can.

Get Help Now at our Opioid Addiction Treatment Center

Oakvine’s PHP treatment program or IOP drug rehab program is here to help. We specialize in opioid and opiate addiction treatment. Our protocols are based on what substance you use, what physical and psychological problems it might have caused, and other context from your life. We will create a custom treatment plan and work with you closely to help you achieve long-term sobriety.

In 2018, nearly 70% of the drug overdoses in the United States involved an opioid. Fortunately, Oakvine can help you return you to the path of a healthy sober life. Many dedicated people recover from opioid and opiate addiction, and we’re here to help you do the same. Start your recovery and call us at .