Pain Killers & Heroin: Is there a difference?
According to a National Survey (2006), almost half of the American public knows a friend or family member with a pain killer addiction. Furthermore, the majority of them are not aware that what they are really addicted to is an opiate. This makes pain killer abuse equal to that of a heroin addiction.
Heroin is a semi-synthetic opioid created from morphine, a derivative of the opium poppy. This opioid compound acts the same way as endorphins by creating a feeling of happiness, well-being, and euphoria. The similarity of heroin addiction to pain killer addiction lies here, in the opiates contained in these substances. Because opiates are addictive substances, the misuse and abuse of pain killers very often leads to a serious addiction.
Although many take opiate based drugs as pain killers, the start of an opiate addiction may be psychological. Individuals may think that by taking their pain killers they can have a better day or become less stressed. Such careless use of these drugs comes with a high price, both substances, will lead you to dependence, tolerance and withdrawal stages. More often than not, a pain killer addiction leads into the use of heroin.
Withdrawal symptoms for these addictions may appear at different time intervals, but the results are the same. They both include vomiting, shaking, stomach pain, depression, suicidal thoughts, horrible cramps, aching bones, restlessness, insomnia lasting days to weeks, runny nose, loss of appetite and sweating.
The recreational use and abuse of pain killers is not to be taken lightly. The dangers of an opiate class drug are very apparent and proven. It is important that you are educated on the dependency of opiates should a doctor prescribe them, use as directed and with caution. Seek the advice of a professional if you start to experience withdrawal symptoms or suspect an abuse problem.