Opioids are a class of drugs that doctors prescribe for severe or chronic pain. Common opioids include oxycodone, hydrocodone, morphine, fentanyl, methadone, and heroin. While these drugs are effective at treating pain, they are also highly dangerous and addictive. The long-term side effects of opioids can include psychological and physical problems and overdose and fatality.
An opioid addiction treatment program offers therapy, professional support, and medication-assisted treatment to combat the long-term side effects of opioids, including opioid addiction. Once the symptoms of opioid use are identified, a treatment specialist at Renaissance Recovery can recommend a treatment plan that helps you recover from addiction and any associated mental disorders.
Not all long-term side effects of opioids are physical or psychological. An addiction can cause problems in relationships, finances, career, and reputation. Even if you never have health problems, your addiction could cause you to lose everything you value. It is only when you hit rock bottom that you may decide it is time to go to a drug and alcohol detox center.
Impaired Cognitive Function
Opioids manipulate brain function by attaching to opioid receptors. Drugs control how the brain receives, sends, and interprets pain signals. This function may prevent the brain’s neurotransmitters from attaching to the opioid receptors. Over long periods, this can impair cognitive performance and affect how you function from day-to-day.
Mental Health Issues
Long-term side effects of opioids can also include mental health issues. If you continue to abuse opioids for an extended period, you may experience disorders, including:
- Aggressive behavior
- Ongoing paranoia
- Anxiety disorder
- Clinical depression
- Bipolar disorder
Mental disorders often lead to addiction. However, opioid addiction can also trigger various mental disorders due to changes in brain function. If you continue to use opioids, you may experience severe anxiety or depression, which only fuels further addiction. Both the drug and the mental disorder create a symbiotic relationship that can only be overcome with professional opioid addiction treatment.
Prescription Drug Dependency
One of the symptoms of long-term opioid use is that you cannot live without the drug. When you first start taking opioids, you feel the euphoric effects of the drug. If you continue to use opioids, the effects wear off as your body builds a tolerance to the drugs. As a result, you may request an increase in the dosage to continue feeling the effects. This creates a cycle that eventually turns into a dependency.
When you decide to get help for opioid addiction, you may seek treatment at a drug detox center. Detox is the first step to recovery from addiction. During detox, your body flushes the harmful substances out of your system. This can cause withdrawal symptoms such as:
- Nausea or vomiting
- Pain and discomfort
Severe opioid withdrawal symptoms may include seizures, high blood pressure, or elevated heart rate. Detox centers offer professional services such as 24/7 supervision and care, emergency treatment, medication-assisted treatment (MAT), and a fully licensed medical staff to help you complete opioid detox.
Organ Damage or Failure
Your body contains multiple organs and systems that work together. When one system is damaged, it can affect all the other systems in the body. One of the long-term side effects of opioids is temporary or permanent organ damage. While some organs may repair themselves after you stop using opioids, others experience permanent damage. This can lead to terminal health problems that plague you for the rest of your life.
Get Help for Opioid Addiction at Renaissance Recovery
If you are struggling with opioid addiction, contact Renaissance Recovery at 866.330.9449. Learn about the long-term side effects of opioids and get help for your opioid addiction. Call us today to find out more about your treatment options.