When you are in pain, reaching for painkillers may seem like a natural response; at least, that might be what your doctor says. However, the dangers of painkillers are both evident and hidden. Regardless of how dangerous opioids are, the common perception of the drugs is that they are not only harmless but helpful. As a result, prescription drug abuse continues to climb at a staggering in the United States.
Opiate addiction treatment centers continue to see a rise in clients who need help with drug dependency. Many clients seek professional help after an overdose or life-changing experience related to painkillers. Yet, regardless of the dangers of painkillers, many users are still largely unaware of their addictive and life-threatening properties.
5 Little Known Dangers of Painkillers
1. The Body Forms a Tolerance to Opioids
Although painkillers are powerful, they are not long-lasting. This is why most prescriptions are designed for short-term use. However, most patients are unaware of why painkillers don’t last. Like any other drug, the body builds a tolerance to painkillers. As a result, patients often request a dosage increase. Instead of refusing to increase the dosage, doctors write prescriptions for more powerful opioids, which leads to a high risk of overdose.
2. Painkillers Are Highly Addictive
Painkillers do more than reduce pain. They also produce pleasurable euphoric effects that cause the user to relax. This effect on the brain can lead to prescription drug abuse or opiate addiction. Many users require professional help at an addiction treatment center to get off drugs entirely. Relapse rates for opiate addiction can be high because users may go back to the drug to treat chronic pain if they can’t find another solution.
3. Extended-Release Painkillers Can Be More Dangerous
Extended-release painkillers stay in the body and reduce pain for longer periods. Examples of extended-release painkillers include:
- MS Contin
The body can build the same level of tolerance to extended-release painkillers as it does regular painkillers. However, extended-release products are more powerful and more dangerous than regular-release pills. A person that increases the dosage has a higher risk of overdose or health problems. They may also need to get help at a substance abuse treatment program much faster when using extended-release opiates.
4. Painkillers Are Also Used for Recreational Use
Opioids such as hydromorphone, oxycodone, and morphine are in high demand on the streets. These drugs are often added to other drugs to enhance their hallucinogenic effects. Someone who has a drug addiction may continue to use painkillers long after their pain has gone away so that they can continue getting high. Painkillers can be used for recreation as much as they are for medicinal purposes because of how they make people feel.
5. Mixing Painkillers with Alcohol
Another one of the dangers of painkillers is how they affect the body when a person drinks alcohol. It is dangerous to combine any strong pain medication with alcohol. However, many users are unaware of how dangerous the combination is. Mixing painkillers and alcohol can lead to side effects such as nausea, drowsiness, fainting, or difficulty breathing. In worst-case scenarios, a person who combines alcohol with painkillers may suffer from a coma or a fatality. The brain and central nervous cannot handle the overload of more than one substance at a time and stops functioning.
Get Help for Prescription Drug Abuse Now at Blueprint Recovery Center
Are you aware of the dangers of painkillers? If not, you need to get the facts about how dangerous and addictive these drugs really are. If you or a loved one is struggling with prescription drug abuse or opiate addiction, contact Blueprint Recovery Center by either calling 833.654.1004 or completing our secure and convenient online form. We offer addiction treatment therapies for all types of addictions and mental health disorders. Don’t wait any longer. Your path to sobriety can start today.