In today’s vernacular, the use of opioid vs opiate has undergone some blurring. Strictly, speaking, an opiate is a substance that comes from the opium poppy or its derivative, morphine. A good example is heroin, which is an illegal street drug. Where do actual opioids fit into the equation?
Opioid vs Opiate
Codeine, morphine, and heroin are opiates but opioids are synthetic substances. Scientists developed them to mimic the pain relief that opiates provide. Examples of opioid painkillers include oxycodone and hydrocodone. You can legally acquire these drugs with a doctor’s prescription. There’s also a black market in operation that lets you buy the medications without a prescription. Both opiates and opioids connect to dedicated receptors in the brain. There, they interrupt the pain signals that the body sends. In larger doses, they also stimulate the release of certain endorphins and neurotransmitters that make you feel good.
Recognizing Addictive Properties
Both sides of the opioid vs opiate debate agree that the drugs have a high addiction potential. Because they initially make you feel comfortable, relaxed and overall well being, it’s easy to want to relive the experience. Therefore, you keep taking the drugs. Eventually, the body develops a tolerance to the substances. You increase the dose to get the same effect. At about the same time, these drugs’ chemicals rewire your brain chemistry. They make the release of the feel-good endorphins possible only when the drug is in your system. Now, if you don’t supply your body with the drugs, you experience symptoms of withdrawal.
Dealing with Withdrawal
An opiate or opioid addiction causes painful withdrawal symptoms that make quitting on your own difficult. Heroin withdrawal, for example, results in powerful waves of pain, anxiety, and depression. The same is true for high doses of prescription drugs. That’s why so many people plan on quitting in the morning and are using again in the afternoon. You can overcome this aspect of addiction with a good-quality opioid detox. Rather than trying to white-knuckle it at home by yourself, check into a detox facility. There, a dedicated staff helps you to overcome the physical dependence. Examples of treatments include:
- Medical detox with supervision that makes the withdrawal process more comfortable
- Customization of a treatment plan, which ensures your safety, comfort, and successful cessation of drug use
- Holistic approach to care to boost overall wellness
- Addiction counseling that encourages you to think long-term about recovery and make plans for subsequent sober living
- Assessment of co-occurring disorders for mental health treatment as well as substance abuse treatment
Don’t let the debate over an opioid vs opiate addiction fool you. Both substances alter your brain’s chemistry and may cause severe dependency problems. However, there’s hope. Recovery begins with a good-quality detox, like Serenity House Detox & Recovery. Call today to get started on your recovery. The number is 866-294-5306.