Young men can be more prone to accidents and injuries that require prescription pain relievers like morphine. When used correctly, the risks of addiction can be reduced. Even still, there are risks of addiction developing the longer morphine is used. As such, it is essential for young men and their loved ones to recognize the signs of morphine addiction.
What Is Morphine?
Morphine is a prescription medication, derived from the poppy plant, used to help relieve pain. When administered, it acts similarly to the natural endorphins in the body and binds itself to pain receptors in the brain, causing the receptors to become less responsive. As a result, the level of pain is reduced. However, at higher doses, morphine can cause a sense of relaxation and calmness. Some people may even experience hallucinations.
How Does Morphine Addiction Develop?
Morphine is usually administered after severe injuries or during a significant surgical procedure to help alleviate pain and discomfort. The frequency and dosage amount are diligently regulated because of the addictiveness of morphine. Just like other substances that alter the brain’s chemistry, the body will develop a tolerance to morphine. The longer morphine is taken, the more evident tolerance becomes. So even though the drug is working to reduce pain, it may not feel that way because of an increase in tolerance.
Sadly, young men can start to abuse morphine by self-regulating dosages and increasing them to achieve the similar pain-relieving effects they used to experience. As a result, morphine addiction can develop after taking the drug for an extended period of time and regulating dosages to achieve the desired effects. Furthermore, the longer someone is on morphine, the higher the risks of becoming dependent on the medication. Additionally, the risks of addiction can increase when morphine is combined with alcohol or other drugs to enhance its effects.
Signs of Morphine Addiction
There are both physical and emotional signs of morphine addiction young men need to be aware of to determine if they are developing an addiction to the drug. However, it is essential to not mistake these signs with signs that the drug is working as prescribed. For example, when taking morphine for pain, you should notice your pain diminish and not be as intense or severe. You may also feel relaxed, calm, and sleepy. You might even experience similar effects as you would when intoxicated, such as slurring your words and problems concentrating and balancing.
As dependence on morphine develops, you will often notice a change in your behaviors, which could include:
- Adjusting your dosage amounts when tolerance develops.
- Mixing morphine use with alcohol, heroin, or other opioid drugs.
- Attempting to hide morphine abuse from your family and friends.
- Keeping a “secret stash” of morphine hidden away for “emergency purposes.”
- Attempting to get multiple morphine prescriptions from different doctors.
- Stealing prescription pain relievers from family and friends.
- Feeling like you cannot function without using morphine.
- You get very defensive and angry if someone questions your morphine drug use.
- Downplaying your morphine use
- You intentionally injure yourself just to get more morphine.
How Dangerous Is Stopping Morphine “Cold Turkey”
Depending on the dosage amount and duration that morphine was used, it can be dangerous to stop taking morphine “cold turkey.” This is because the body will go through withdrawal as the drug leaves the body, which can take weeks. During this time, the withdrawal symptoms can become very severe and include experiencing hot and cold sweats, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, uncontrolled shaking, and extreme pain. Unfortunately, it is common to start retaking morphine or turn to other substances, to alleviate the withdrawal symptoms.
The best approach to quit using morphine is to be gradually weaned off the drug. Usually, your doctor will begin to step down your dosage and frequency as you heal from your injury. Using this approach allows the drug levels to be gradually reduced until you no longer require morphine.
In cases where you have developed an addiction to morphine, a similar process is used that could include MAT (medication-assisted treatment), where a non-addictive medication is used to alleviate pain while morphine dosages are gradually reduced until the drug is no longer needed.
Treatment for Morphine Addiction in Torrance, CA
If you are a young man who was prescribed morphine for an injury and have noticed the signs of addiction and want help to stop, you will find the assistance you need at New Life House in Torrance, CA.
We offer morphine rehab programs tailored to the specific needs of young men who want help to overcome their morphine addictions. To learn more about our treatment programs for morphine addiction, please feel free to contact us, email us at [email protected], or call us at (888) 357-7577 today!