While few people may actually abuse opium in its natural form, opium-type drugs exist in abundance. From heroin to codeine to OxyContin, the effects of opium abuse on the mind and body follow a certain course regardless of the type of drug involved.
With frequent, ongoing drug use, signs of an out-of-control opium abuse problem develop gradually over time, making it difficult for those affected to reduce or stop drug use. Understanding how opium affects the mind and body can go a long way towards preventing an opium abuse problem from morphing into a full-blown addiction.
Opium Abuse Effects
Opium-based drugs are formulated to produce certain medicinal effects without posing a substantial risk for abuse or addiction. Under these conditions, staying within prescription guidelines prevents the harmful effects of the drug from taking shape. According to the U. S. National Library of Medicine, when used for recreational purposes, the effects of opium abuse on brain functioning opens the door for out-of-control opium abuse practices to develop. In effect, opium abuse breeds a vicious cycle of dependency that eventually culminates in addiction.
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Signs of Opium Abuse Gone Out-of-Control
Inability to Control Amounts Used
Opium-based drugs have a chemical makeup that easily integrates within the brain’s chemical environment. In turn, the brain naturally adapts by adjusting its own chemical activities to accommodate opium’s effects. As this transpires, larger drug doses must be ingested to produce the desired “high” effect. This cycle will continue on indefinitely, driving a person to engage in compulsive drug use.
Frequent opium abuse creates widespread chemical imbalances in the brain. These imbalances limit the brain’s ability to manage bodily processes as normal. These conditions cause withdrawal symptoms, such as insomnia, fatigue, depression and anxiety to occur on a regular basis. Once opium abuse becomes a means for self-medicating withdrawal symptoms, a person’s drug problem has reached a whole new level of dysfunction.
Needing Opium to Cope with Daily Life
It doesn’t take very long at all before the effects of opium abuse start to warp the areas of the brain that regulate thinking, emotions and behavior, according to State University of New York at Buffalo. At this point, opium fulfills an emotional need in a person’s life in terms of enabling him or her to feel normal and content while coping with daily life pressures. These conditions indicate a full-blown addiction has taken hold.
Declining Quality of Life
Once opium abuse morphs into opium addiction, a person’s overall lifestyle will start to undergo noticeable changes. In essence, the drug has become “the” top priority in his or her life, taking precedence over family, work and physical health. People who’ve reached this stage start to have money problems, relationship problems and health problems, but keep engaging in opium abuse in spite of the negative consequences that result.
An out-of-control opium abuse problem takes on a life of its own, controlling a person’s thought life, emotions and daily activities. Without needed treatment help, these conditions will only worsen over time sending a person’s life into a downward spiral of frustration and despair.
If you suspect you or someone you know may be struggling with an out-of-control opium abuse problem and need help finding treatment that meets your needs, please don’t hesitate to call our toll-free helpline at 800-405-7172 to speak with one of our addictions specialists.
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