Opioids are becoming more and more popular all over the nation. In fact, the use of opioids to treat pain dates back to before recorded history, with the use of the opium poppy for its therapeutic benefits. However a new study indicates that prior substance abuse is linked to opioid abuse in young men.
All About Opioid Drugs
Opioids are used to treat acute pain and include such prescription drugs as morphine, methadone, hydrocodone and oxycodone. Opioids stimulate the areas of the brain that receive pleasure and in turn produce a sense of well-being and euphoria. Repeated use of these types of drugs begin to overwhelm the system with dopamine and, in time, the body thinks it needs the drug in order to survive and this is how addiction begins.
Many people can, unfortunately, become addicted to opioid painkillers after being prescribed this type of medication for an injury or to manage the pain after an operation. There is also the misconception that they are safer to abuse because they have been prescribed by a doctor. Actually, long-term abuse of opioids can cause slowed brain function, drowsiness, constipation and depressed breathing.
Even more dangerous is the risk of death from combining these drugs with other depressants such as alcohol and other types of drugs.
A recent study by Yale University School of Medicine revealed that alcohol, cigarettes and marijuana play a major role in opioid abuse later on, especially in men ages 18 to 25. The study also stated that those who had used marijuana were 2.5 times more likely to abuse prescription opioids. But, why would someone feel the desire to abuse prescription drugs?
Well, it may be because they are fairly easy to come by. In fact, most would agree that you may find these types of drugs in nearly every medicine cabinet in America and around the world. The National Survey on Drug Use and Health shows that over 70 percent of people that were abusing prescription pain relievers had gotten them from friends or relatives, as oppose to the 5 percent who got them from a drug dealer or over the Internet.
The Gateway Theory
If you were to ask any number of drug addicts about the first drug they ever tried, most of them would admit that it was marijuana. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, someone who smokes marijuana is more that 104 times more likely to use cocaine than someone who has never tried pot.
So what can be done to prevent this problem from occurring?
The site www.calnarconon.org recommends that education and setting a good example are the best means of prevention. Kids need to know the dangers of using marijuana such as dependency and the potential of its use leading to the use of other harder drugs, which pose an even higher dependency potential. Through educating people, especially the younger generation, we can hope to cut back on the amount of kids trying marijuana in the first place.
This will, in turn, reduce the amount of young adults moving on to other drugs such as opioids or even worse: dying as a result of drug misuse.
In addition, no matter the addiction problem or how long it has been going on, anyone using drugs should seek immediate and professional help in a residential treatment center. The sooner the problem is caught and handled, the better.
For more information on opioid abuse or to help someone with a drug or alcohol problem contact Narconon Freedom Center today.