HOW DO OPIOIDS EFFECT PEOPLE?
Opioids help relieve physical pain and can also make people feel good emotionally. People who use opioids regularly can develop a tolerance. A tolerance means they will need to take more opioids more often to feel the same as when they first started taking them. It only takes 10 days to develop an addiction to opioids. An addiction is when your mind and body tell you to take opioids, even if you don’t have to take them for a medical reason.
People who are addicted to opioids and try to cut back or stop using opioids will go through withdrawal. Withdrawal symptoms include intense muscle and bone pain, muscle spasms, cold flashes with goose bumps, vomiting, and not sleeping. People can go through withdrawal with a doctor’s help, or they can go through withdrawal without a plan. Going through withdrawal without a plan is called “going cold turkey.”
WHAT IS AN OVERDOSE?
An overdose is when someone stops breathing because of opioids. Taking opioids with alcohol and other medicines also puts people at a higher risk of overdosing. Certain medicines, called benzodiazepines, are especially dangerous. Some examples of benzodiazepines are Valium, Xanax, and Klonopin.