What is Opioid?

Opioids are synthetic drugs that are produced to have the same effect as opiums. They are commonly prescribed for pain relief. They are classified by the FDA as narcotics, and could and should only be taken under physician’s advisement. The most common opioid among others is morphine, heroin, codeine. These are commonly used to relieve the pain of cancer patients for its powerful effect on the body.

What does it do to the body?

The mechanism of opioid drug is to bind with specific opioid receptors in the Central Nervous System (Brain and the Spinal Cord). Opioids alter the brain’s normal process by triggering the creation of artificial endorphins in the brain. Endorphins are responsible for the feeling euphoric, sedated, and pain-free, artificial or not. When the body stops producing endorphins, the person becomes depressed and empty, making them seek more endorphins through the drug and becomes dependent on it.

What are the adverse effects on the body?

Opioids have a ton of side and adverse effect towards the body, but over usage can lead to fatal consequences. Major hazards with overdosage of opioid are respiratory depression, apnea, circulatory depression, respiratory arrest, shock, and cardiac arrest.

What is OPIOID EPIDEMIC?

Also known as Opioid Crisis, it is the rapid increase in the use of opioids in the 2000s.

According to CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) from 2000 – 2015 more than half a million people died from drug overdose. And 91 Americans die every day from an opioid overdose.[1]

Opioid analgesic pain relievers are now the most prescribed class of medications in the United States according to surgeons. More than 289 million prescriptions were written each year. This increase in prescription is accompanied by an increase in the misuse of the drug as well.[2]

To understand more about this topic, here are some helpful links for you to check out:


[1] https://www.cdc.gov/drugoverdose/epidemic/index.html
[2] https://addiction.surgeongeneral.gov/surgeon-generals-report.pdf
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