When it comes to opioids, we all know that they can be addictive. This addiction can cause major issues in relationships with others and ourselves. But that is not the only negative effect of opioid use. So what are the health effects of taking these drugs in both the short, as well as the long term?
Short-Term Health Effects
There are many short term effects when it comes to opioid use and misuse. While opioids can help to relieve pain and cause people to feel euphoric, they can also cause some potentially dangerous side effects.
Drowsiness, confusion, and nausea happen soon after taking this drug. Constipation can also be a big issue - especially if use of the drug persists over the long term. So it is best to avoid opioids if at all possible to mitigate this issue.
Slowed breathing is a potentially serious concern. This is because it is possible for opioids to cause you to breathe so slowly that you develop hypoxia. This is when you do not get enough air to the brain. This can cause various side effects, including brain damage, coma, and even death.
Long-Term Health Effects
One of the things that many people do not consider, is the long-term effects of taking opioids, especially in ever-increasing doses. This can be fatal, or at the very least leave you in a state of disability for the rest of your life.
There also seems to be a fair amount of evidence that opioids can increase your risk of fractures. These can be painful and debilitating. Evidence also seems to indicate that long term effects of these drugs including hormonal issues such as hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal dysregulation. These hormone dysregulations can cause a variety of effects in themselves, such as more brittle bones.
As mentioned before, opioids can slow breathing down to such a degree that it can cause one to fall into a coma, cause brain damage, or even die. Many organ systems can be damaged irreversibly as a result of these drugs, causing various new issues later on in life.
One of the biggest health risks associated with opioid misuse is, of course, an overdose. This is when you take more of a drug than your body can handle, and your body goes into a type of shock, often resulting in organ failure and death.
You can tell that someone is having an overdose if their body goes limp, their face becomes pale and clammy, there is vomiting, they are unable to speak or cannot be awakened, or their heartbeat slows or stops completely. This is serious, if you see it, call 911 immediately.
Purdue Pharma and other pharmaceutical companies have been pushing these drugs more and more in recent years. As a result, millions of people are addicted, and many have died. Many more have had their lives altered in terrible ways due to opioids, and the main reason for this has to do with the fact that people like the Sackler family just want to earn more money.
Doctors are paid to prescribe these drugs and often are given incentives the more they prescribe them. As a result, many people are prescribed addictive medications even when they do not need them. With the massive amounts of short and long-term effects that these dangerous medications can have on the body, it is vital to inform more people because ultimately, it will save lives.
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