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Six Harmful Effects of Opioid Addiction to the Body

Opiates are potent drugs that can be readily prescribed and easy to get hold of. Because of these, they are among the most abused drugs in the country today. Opiates include various substances ranging from heroin to thebaine.

But not everything is terrible about this kind of drug. Opiates are useful in managing pain and an excellent solution in suppressing coughs as well. However, since it is easy to get hold of this drug, some people tend to abuse it until they become addicted to it.

Regular exposure to opiate can take a toll on a person’s body, which would then require that the patient seek professional treatment at a Suboxone clinic. To help you understand it, learn about some of the common side effects of opioids.


People who abuse opiates tend to have a reduced reaction time. That is why those who drive under the influence of this drug could very well lose their freedom once they lose their license. There are even a few states that would already consider you intoxicated while driving just by the mere presence of any illegal substance.


Chronic painkiller abusers are also prone to develop severe depression. Patients who use painkillers for more than six months have a 50% higher risk of developing a depressive episode. These depressive episodes only get worse the longer that the patient uses opiate painkillers.

Poor Immune System

Opiate addicts suffer from a suppressed immune system. Once their condition progresses, it can lead to frequent infections and even heart problems. Moreover, prolonged use of such drugs can result in frequent and severe constipation.

drugs narcotic syringe on floor

Opioid Endocrinopathy

Opioid-induced endocrinopathy is one of the most commonly diagnosed side effects of opiate abuse. It often has symptoms that range from decreased libido, anxiety and potential infertility. Moreover, it also increases the patient’s chances of developing osteoporosis, and loss of muscle mass and strength.

Opiate Dependence

Another side result of opiate abuse is addiction. One way to diagnose opiate dependence is when a person cannot get off the medication despite the consequences he or she experiences when using the drug. They might even start to steal money to fund their addiction. Soon, their personal relationships will get affected, and their performance at work will suffer, as well.

Respiratory Depression

Aside from its effects on the brain, abusing opioid painkillers can also lead to respiratory depression. It can deprive the brain of oxygen and even the body tissues, too. Once it happens, the person may suffer from debilitating organ system injury, which proves to be fatal to anyone.

These are only a few of the effects of opiates in the body. If you know anyone who suffers from opiate addiction, encourage the person to seek help as soon as possible, specifically medication-assisted treatment. Some people can help them with their addiction by assisting them in overcoming the barriers that hinder their recovery. Seeking help from professionals is an excellent way to ensure that they get the right support for their condition and stay sober.

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