In most cases, narcotic abuse and addiction occurs when an individual wants to relieve pain due to a certain illness. While not all patients who are given narcotics succumb to addiction, there is always a tendency to get hooked to the effects of these drugs.
According to the National Development and Research Institute (NDRI), there is an increase of heroin abuse and addiction among adolescents in recent years. This trend is believed to be a direct result of easier access as well as the increased purity of this substance from seven percent to sixty-nine percent according to Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).
In her study on “Treatment of Heroin or Other Opioid Addiction in Adolescents,” Dr. Lisa A. Marsch brings to light the increasing number of heroin use among adolescents, especially among eighth, tenth, and twelfth graders. According to this report, most of these young people start using heroin by snorting the substance and then later on they learn how to inject in into their body.
The study also highlights the fact that narcotics or opiate drugs are the second most abused illegal drugs in the United States. In dealing with narcotic abuse, it is extremely vital to understand the difference between addiction and dependence.
A Brief Guide To Narcotic Drugs
The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) states that narcotics are legally controlled substances. Generally, these drugs are classified as Schedule 1 to Scheduled 5. According to DEA, heroin belongs to Schedule 1. Most drugs that belong in Schedule 1 such as heroin do not provide medical benefits. Thus, these drugs are strictly prohibited. Distributing, using, and buying narcotics is a criminal offense.for more information visit: http://www.urban75.org/legal/drugs.html
Narcotics are specific substances that can dull your senses. When you encounter the term opium, semi-synthetic derivatives, opioid, and opium derivatives, you are basically dealing with narcotics. These drugs have other street names such as oxy, big H, brown sugar, mud, Dover’s powder, purple drank, and there are many others.
Narcotics can be in different forms such as the following:
• liquid form (often used orally or intravenously)
• skin patches
Unhealthy Effects of Narcotic Abuse
If used for medical purposes, narcotics can help you feel more relaxed and calm. Usually, these drugs are given for the treatment of certain illnesses such as diarrhea and cough. It is also helps put the patient to sleep.
The problem starts when this drug is used not for its medical benefits but for its effects. In terms of its mental or psychological effects, narcotics can make a person feel drowsy, apathetic, and unfocused.
Doctors are cautious in prescribing this drug to their patients mainly because it can lead to psychological dependence. According to the DEA, this drug has the power to alter your senses to the extent that you become dependent on its effects. Narcotics, if taken at a high dose, can be lethal.
Difference between Dependence and Addiction
There are instances when a person needs a higher dose of opioid, especially if the patient is undergoing therapy. Again, the only purpose for the increased dosage is purely medical, which is to help the patient feel less pain during the treatment process.
However, a patient may experience withdrawal symptoms later on when the doctor decides to terminate the use of the opioid. For patients who are already used to the effects of the drug, they become physically dependent and continue to crave for more opioids.
On the other hand, addiction happens when a patient compulsively seeks and uses this drug for non-medical reasons. It even becomes more obvious if the person becomes self-destructive. Patients who become addicted to narcotics must be provided with appropriate treatments to combat the effects of drug addiction.
Ideally, a physician should reduce the dose of opioids for patients who have been using this drug for a long period of time to avoid withdrawal symptoms. Many patients who already stopped receiving opioids treatment do not feel the need to experience its effects.
The abuse and addiction only occurs when a person’s central nervous system is already altered by the euphoric effects of narcotics. Heroin addicts, for instance, often describe that they usually feel very relaxed and happy when they are under the effects of the drug.
Common Symptoms of Narcotic Addiction
• Bloodshot eyes
• Feeling no physical pain
• Frequent vomiting
• Poor judgment
• Incoherent speech
• Visible needle marks in the arms
If left unattended, narcotic abuse can lead to all sorts of health problems. A person who constantly uses heroin, for example, may suffer from liver problems and pneumonia.
Other health complications include seizures, heart attack, neurological problems, and even death. Family and community support are always available to help you or someone you know deal with the effects of narcotic addiction.…Read More