Prescription opioids are a type of pain-relieving medication, such as oxycodone, hydrocodone, and morphine. Doctors generally prescribe them to treat moderate to severe pain. Since these drugs latch onto opioid receptors in the brain and block pain, they trigger reward centers in the brain, causing them to be highly addictive.
If you are concerned that someone you love may be abusing opioids, it’s important to know the signs so you can help them receive treatment. The following are some of the most common indicators of opioid addiction.
Common Signs of Opioid Abuse
One of the first things you may notice about your loved one is that their moods are different than usual. Sometimes, they may seem euphoric and happy, followed by periods of irritability and depression. These mood changes can be caused by an intense high, which causes them to feel happy. However, once the drug begins to wear off, they may experience withdrawal symptoms that lead to depression.
Because opioids cause the brain to release large amounts of feel-good hormones called endorphins, people are naturally happier under the influence. When the drug’s effects begin to fade, they are more prone to an extremely low mood.
While shifts in mood can be caused by other factors, such as a mental health condition, it’s important to support them and watch for other warning signs.
Abnormal Sleeping & Eating Habits
Opioid use can also alter someone’s sleep and eating habits. The medication or drugs may cause them to to become tired during the day but struggle to sleep. They may also experience changes in their appetite, such as eating less, causing them to lose weight. This often occurs because opioids suppress appetite.
Poor Performance in School or at Work
While it may not happen overnight, you may notice their performance at work or school declining. Addiction often leads people to ignore other responsibilities as they seek out the need to fulfill their cravings. Even going without opioids for a short period can cause an intense urge to use again. As addiction grows, they may lose interest in their work or school and other parts of their life, which can lead to serious consequences.
Those addicted to opioids may begin to have financial trouble, either because they are spending too much money or because they have lost their job due to their addiction. They may even start to ask to borrow money from friends and family.
Contact Resilience Health
If someone you love is struggling with opioid addiction, Resilience Health can provide compassionate care and support. We offer a two-year, long-term treatment program that provides high success rates. Our program is longer than most rehabilitation programs because we recognize the difficulties of overcoming addiction. We can provide the necessary support your loved one needs, as well as family education and support programs.
For those ready to take the next step in overcoming opioid addiction, contact Resilience Health today at (435) 261-7878.