Opioids, such as prescription narcotics, are highly addictive. They work on certain receptors in the brain to decrease pain and create a calm feeling while also inducing tiredness. Narcotics are often used as the first line of defense against moderate to severe pain in hospitals and clinics around the world. While behavioral therapies can decrease some types of pain, especially chronic pain, narcotics are often necessary for acute pain, such as what occurs with a serious injury or a surgery. Narcotics may also be prescribed for cancer, tooth extractions, labor and delivery, fibromyalgia and rheumatoid arthritis.
Be Prepared When Using Prescription Drugs
When the time comes to go off the medication, patients should be aware that they may feel withdrawal symptoms if they have been on the medication for more than a week. This is because long-term use of narcotics almost always produces dependency but not addiction. It is impossible to predict when dependency occurs because it can occur at a different point for everyone. While some are dependent on a narcotic after only a week, others may be able to take the drug for a month or longer without any problems.
It is typically only patients who abuse their drugs by taking them in a manner for which they have not been prescribed or those who use someone else’s prescribed narcotics who become addicted to prescription drugs. These individuals should immediately contact a drug rehabilitation center, such as First Step Recovery, for help in regaining their physical, mental, emotional and social lives.