Opioid Addiction & Abuse

Prescribed by doctors, opioids are typically used to treat pain and some cancers. However, with a highly addictive nature, patients must be monitored regularly, and doses must be slowly reduced to prevent tolerance and dependence. Opioid addiction is a common problem which requires rehab treatment to overcome.

It is still possible for both patients who are prescribed opiates and those who use opiates illegally to develop an addiction. Here, we explain the signs and symptoms of opioid addiction and highlight what you can do if you’re worried about yourself or someone you care about.


Why Are Opioids Addictive?

When opioids are taken, they block the brain’s receptors and create artificial endorphins, which result in feelings of pleasure and euphoria. Used under the supervision of a medical professional, opioids can be safe. However, too much use of opioids in large quantities or for long periods of time can lead to your brain relying on artificial endorphins to feel good; your brain can even begin to stop producing its own endorphins.

With a highly addictive nature, individuals can soon begin to build up a tolerance to opioids which means they require higher doses to get the desired effect. Plus, over time, as higher doses of opioids are taken, you might find that you require the substance to function. This is called opioid dependence and means that without opioids, you’re likely to suffer from opioid withdrawal symptoms.


Are you suffering from Painkiller Addiction and need help? If so, Rehab Clinics Group are a leading UK based experts in drug rehabilitation treatment. Find out how we can help by getting in touch with our friendly team today. You can either call our confidential helpline on 0800 470 0382 or request a callback by clicking on the below form.

Contact Us

Signs of Opioid Addiction

Just like any other drug addiction, opioid addiction can present itself in a range of psychological, physical and behavioural symptoms. The biggest sign of substance addiction is if someone cannot stop taking the substance – despite its negative effects on their life. Another sign is that the person experiences cravings and withdrawal symptoms without the prescription drug or is using higher doses than the doctor prescribes.

Other signs and symptoms of opioid addiction include:

  • Going to extreme lengths to get a prescription or higher doses
  • Using opioids without a prescription
  • Continuing to use the substance even though the initial pain has disappeared
  • Lying and deceitful behaviour associated with your drug use
  • Poor mental health episodes

If something has made you question whether you have an opioid addiction, it’s important to consider why. Prescription drug addiction is a serious health condition that requires medical support from doctors, nurses, counsellors and mental health specialists, and often, opioid rehab is the best treatment option.

Just like other drugs and alcohol, opioid addiction can soon take its toll on your health, money, work life, and relationships. It may be friends and family that recognise your addiction first. That’s why we have a helpline at Rehab Clinics Group for anyone affected by addiction – just call on 0800 470 0382. Whether you’re concerned about a loved one, want to get a colleague or employee some help or want to discuss your own opioid use, our friendly team is here to listen and advise.


Effects of Opioid Abuse on the Body

Opioids release artificial endorphins around the body, making the brain feel good. Over time, this can slow the body’s natural production of endorphins and how good the body and brain feel. In this instance, the brain will likely crave opiates to increase its endorphins and feel good again. Because of this highly addictive nature, doctors only prescribe small doses and monitor patients using opioids.

Those who are using opiates illegally, however, are at risk of developing a drug addiction. This can have a huge impact on your physical and mental health. Some common side effects of long-term opioid use include anxiety and depression, stomach issues, sickness, lack of motivation, organ damage and failure, and even overdose.

Long-term use of opioids can also result in dependence and tolerance being built up. This can make it very dangerous to quit these drugs abruptly as the body and brain are now reliant on the substance. Instead, doses must be slowly reduced, and withdrawal symptoms monitored to ensure the body is coping. This is another reason why an addiction recovery treatment centre is often the only choice if you want to stop taking opioids.


Are Some People More Likely to Develop an Addiction?

The most important thing to remember is that anyone can develop an addiction – whatever stage of their life and whether or not they’ve witnessed addiction before. However, in terms of opioid addiction, studies have shown that long-term opioid use for pain and medical treatment can increase someone’s risk of addiction.

If you’ve previously suffered from addiction, you may be more likely to develop an addiction to opiates because you have previously struggled with addictive behaviours. That’s not to say that you will develop another addiction. With the right medical support, evidence-based treatments, and therapies, it’s possible to walk away from substance abuse – once and for all – and get your life back on the right track.


Seek Treatment for Opioid Addiction

Perhaps you’ve already tried to stop taking opioids or don’t know where to start. Maybe you’re worried about a loved one and want to get them some help but don’t know what to say. You’re not alone – Rehab Clinics Group is here.

For those who are struggling with addiction personally, it can be so hard to stop taking opioids on your own. That’s why we’ve created a safe and supportive space to help you, combining leading medical professionals, state-of-the-art facilities and evidence-based treatment so you can combat the physical addiction and understand your emotional triggers. Families, friends and even employers – we have support for you, too – whether you want to know what help is out there, have a question or concern, or even want to arrange an intervention or referral.

Addiction can be scary, isolating and debilitating, but it doesn’t have to stay that way. Instead, you can dream for the future and start living the life you want – away from opioids and substance misuse for good. Contact our team today by calling 0800 047 0382, and take the first step.