What Are Opiates?

Addiction to opiates is a serious problem because of the dangers associated with the drugs. Opiates can cause severe health problems and sometimes death when they are abused and misused. Every individual who takes prescription painkillers should understand the what opiates are, the possible dangers and the risk of addiction. Opiates can kill if addiction is not managed as quickly as possible.

What are Opiates?

Opiates are substances that create morphine like effects in users. Opiates are typically used as painkillers or sedatives and can be prescribed. These substances can be highly addictive and if not managed correctly can be deadly.

Dangers of Abusing Opiates

what are opiates?

Opiates are drugs that were created from opium poppy flowers. While created from a natural flower, the substances are highly addictive and have many dangers that can arise. Depending on the individual, it is possible to become addicted to the drugs with a single dose.

Common dangers associated with abusing opiates include:

  • High blood pressure
  • Increased heart rate
  • Heart conditions
  • Stroke
  • Severe mood swings
  • Increased rates of illness
  • Hallucinations
  • Muscle pain
  • Delirium
  • Muscle spasms
  • Organ failure
  • Allergies
  • Overdosing
  • Death


Due to the potential dangers of taking the drug, it is vital to seek professional treatment as soon as possible. Opiates are not safe drugs, particularly when the drugs are taken as a recreational drug or in a way that differs from doctor recommendations for pain.

Abusing opiates can cause severe problems with health. If opiate abuse continues, then the risk of severe side effects and death increases. While the risks are severe, Best Drug Rehabilitation offers services to help individuals fight addiction and live a normal lifestyle without drugs.

Opiate Withdrawal Symptoms

While abusing opiates has several potentially dangerous problems, withdrawal symptoms can become as worrisome as the drug. Depending on the level of addiction, the length of time an individual has taken the drug, and personal reactions to the substance, the severity of withdrawal symptoms will vary.

Opiates have severe withdrawal symptoms after addiction develops. The common symptoms associated with withdrawals include:

  • Paranoia
  • Panic attacks
  • Insomnia
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Mood Swings
  • Chills
  • Muscle pain
  • Bone pain
  • Fevers
  • Vomiting
  • Weakness
  • Restlessness
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Strokes
  • Seizures
  • Death


While withdrawal symptoms associated with opiates are intimidating, detoxification processes are medically supervised. Doctors and nurses provide support and help through the discomfort of withdrawing. In some situations, medications are used to help reduce severe health risks.

Best Drug Rehabilitation will provide medically supervised detoxification. Due to the possible risk of death, strokes, or other symptoms, the medical staff will help ease the transition into a drug-free lifestyle.

Types of Opiate Drugs

Opiate drugs are readily available in several forms. While the drugs are highly addictive, they are also used in medicine to help in cases of severe pain. Opiates naturally block pain receptors, so doctors prescribe medications that contain opioid components when patients are recovering from surgery, injuries, or other painful experiences.

The most commonly available types of opiate drugs are designed to relieve pain. Codeine, hydrocodone, and oxycodone are commonly prescribed to pain sufferers. When taken as directed, the medications are effective against pain from surgery, accidents, injuries, and other situations. While the medications are commonly given to patients, some individuals actually become addicted when taking the drug as directed by a doctor. Opiate medications are highly addictive, so it is important to discuss concerns about addiction before taking the drugs for pain.

Heroin is another type of opiate drug. Heroin is primarily used as a recreational drug and is highly addictive. Doctors do not prescribe heroin and it is not an easily obtained drug.

Morphine is the original opiate medication. While it was originally developed for pain relief and used during the American Civil War, it is addictive and is only used under the supervision of a medical doctor. The most common use of morphine is after a heart attack, painful surgery, or similar severe cases of pain. Due to modern advances in medicine, morphine is not commonly used during  surgery. Doctors often use alternative solutions that have a lower risk of addiction.

Risk of Death

Opiate drugs, like heroin and codeine, are often associated with drug abuse. The growing rate of prescription drug abuse is a concern due to the high risk of death. Opiates can result in death due to several potential situations. Depending on the level of abuse, the most common cause of death due to opiate addiction is an overdose. Taking a high level of the drug can cause organ failure, strokes, heart attacks, and death if it is not treated immediately. The longer treatment waits, the more likely an overdose will kill the user.

Beyond the risk of overdosing, the regular abuse of opiates can cause changes in the body. Over time, the opiates cause organ failure, heart attacks, high blood pressure, and other possible risk factors for death. Eventually, the body will fail to recover.

Best Drug Rehabilitation Can Help

Addiction to opiates is a serious concern. Opiate drugs can and will kill when addiction is allowed to continue. Fortunately, Best Drug Rehabilitation offers treatment services that help individuals get past the dangerous withdrawals and reduces the risk of death as the drugs are avoided. A drug-free life is possible with professional treatment.

opiate medication

From Painkillers to Heroin: The Unintended Consequences of Opiate Medication

The addiction epidemic spreading throughout our nation has been growing at an unprecedented rate. It has been a problem for …

addiction treatment medication

U.S. Doctors: Their Take on Medication Maintenance Addiction Treatment

Addiction has been an issue within our nation for many years and there have been numerous forms of treatment developed to …

oxycontin and pain management

The Dangerously Flawed History Behind OxyContin and Pain Management

The drug epidemic within our country has seemed to only worsen as time goes on. Many substances have been reformulated for …