An Overview of Opioid Abuse: Statistics, Signs, and Symptoms
Opioid abuse is a serious public health problem in the United States. Opioids are a family of drugs that include painkillers like oxycodone and hydrocodone, as well as heroin. Abuse of opioids can lead to addiction, overdose, and death. This article provides an overview of opioid abuse, including statistics, signs and symptoms, and how it can be treated.
What is Opioid Abuse?
Opioid abuse is the use of prescription opioid drugs in a way that does not comply with their prescribed use. This can include taking more opioids than prescribed, sharing opioids with others, and using opioids illegally.
This drug abuse can cause a number of signs and symptoms, including abdominal pain, constipation, diarrhea, euphoria, increased energy, impaired coordination, nausea, and vomiting. Some of these signs and symptoms may be mild and go away after a person stops using opioids, but others may be more serious and require treatment.
Opioid abuse can lead to addiction and can be fatal.
Statistics on Opioid Abuse
- Opioid abuse is highest among people over the age of 40.
- According to the National Library of Medicine (NLM), approximately 2 million people in the United States suffers from opioid use disorders. This means that they are using opioids in a way that harms their health or leads to dependency.
- Prescription opioids are the most commonly abused drugs in the United States. In 2015, more than 47 million people aged 12 or older reported using an opioid drug at some point in their lives.
- In 2015, there were an estimated 29 million opioid users in the United States. That’s more than ever before, and it’s an increase from 19 million in 2010.
- In 2016, about 1.4 million people abused opioids, and this number is growing every year. The National Institute on Drug Abuse states that the most common opioid abused is heroin, followed by painkillers (such as oxycodone and hydrocodone).
- In 2016, there were an estimated 19 million Americans who misused opioids, including prescription medications and heroin.
- Opioid abuse is a growing problem in the United States. In 2016, there were an estimated 26 million people who abused prescription opioids. This number is likely higher because many people do not report abusing opioids.
Signs and Symptoms of Opioid Abuse
Opioid abuse is on the rise in the United States, and more people are beginning to recognize the signs and symptoms of this problem.
Signs and symptoms of opioid dependence include:
- Cravings for opioids
- Difficulty stopping taking opioids
- Increasing dose levels to get the same effect
- Going beyond the prescribed dosage, using any means possible to obtain opioids
- Spending a lot of money on opioids
- Blacking out from opioid use
- Needing more opioids than prescribed.
Here are some of the most common signs and symptoms of opioid abuse:
- Physical dependence: After prolonged use, people develop a physical dependence on opioids. This means that they need opioids to function normally and will experience withdrawal symptoms if they stop using them abruptly. Opioid abusers can also develop an addiction to the prescription drugs they take for pain relief.
- Mood swings: Opioid abusers may experience mood swings, including feelings of euphoria, sadness, or anxiety. This may be due to the fact that opioids can affect a person’s mood and emotions in a similar way to other drugs like alcohol or cocaine.
- Financial problems: Opioid abusers may have difficulty paying their bills or managing their finances because they are spending more money than they earn. They might also rob or steal to get money to buy drugs.
- Withdrawal symptoms: Opioid withdrawal can be very painful and difficult to cope with. It can cause tremors, muscle aches, diarrhea, vomiting, and extreme sleepiness or fatigue.
Opioid abuse is defined as the use of prescription painkillers or heroin for nonmedical purposes. There are many types of opioids, including prescription medications such as OxyContin and Vicodin, and illegal drugs like heroin and fentanyl. The drug abuse can be caused by a variety of factors, including:
- Social dysfunction
- Deaths due to opioid abuse
- Lack of awareness about the risks of opioid abuse
- Flawed prescribing practices
- Abuse of multiple opioids at once
- Coercive drug addiction
- Trauma or emotional stressors in early life
- Inherited factors such as a genetic predisposition to drug addiction.
Opioid abuse is a serious problem in the United States. There are many signs and symptoms of this abuse, but not all people who abuse opioids will have them. If you or someone you know is abusing opioids, please talk to a doctor or drug abuse counselor.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), opioid abuse is now the leading cause of death from drug overdose.
Treatment for opioid abuse typically includes medication and/or therapy. If you or someone you know is abusing opioids, it is important to get help as soon as possible.
There are many types of medication that can help treat opioid abuse. These include:
- Naloxone (Narcan): Naloxone (Narcan) is a drug that can help reverse the effects of an opioid overdose. It is usually given as an injection, but it can also be inhaled.
- Methadone: Methadone is a medication that helps people who are addicted to opioids detoxify and prevent relapse. It is typically given as an injection, but it can also be taken by mouth.
- Buprenorphine: Buprenorphine is a medication that helps people who are addicted to opioids remain abstinent. It is usually given as an injection, but it can also be taken by mouth.
- Clonidine: Clonidine is a medication that can help people who are addicted to opioids relax. It is usually given as an injection, but it can also be taken by mouth.
- Tramadol: Tramadol is a medication that can help people who have opioid addiction to relieve pain. It is usually given as an injection, but it can also be taken by mouth.
- Suboxone: Suboxone is a medication that helps people who are addicted to opioids stay abstinent. It is usually given as an injection, but it can also be taken by mouth.
- Naltrexone: Naltrexone is a medication that can help people who are addicted to opioids relapse. It is usually given as an injection, but it can also be taken by mouth.
- Acamprosate: Acamprosate is a medication that can help people who are addicted to opioids stay abstinent. It is usually given as an injection, but it can also be taken by mouth.
- Venlafaxine: Venlafaxine is a medication that can help people who are addicted to opioids manage their emotions. It is usually given as an injection, but it can also be taken by mouth.
There is not one specific treatment that is best for everyone who abuses opioids. Treatment will be based on the individual’s symptoms and history.
Some people may need medication only while others may also require therapy. Some people may need to stay in treatment indefinitely, while others may need only periodic treatment.
The most important thing is to seek help if you or someone you know abuse opioids.
Prevention of opioid abuse
There is a lot of information on opioid abuse out there, but it can be difficult to know where to start. This blog will provide an overview of opioid abuse, with statistics and signs to help you identify if someone is abusing opioids, as well as symptoms to look for when trying to get help.
Opioid abuse is the misuse of prescription opioids, such as morphine, oxycodone, hydrocodone and fentanyl. It is a serious problem that can lead to addiction and overdose. Statistics show that opioid abuse is on the rise. In 2015, there were an estimated 29 million opioid users in the United States. That’s more than ever before, and it’s an increase from 19 million in 2010.
If you or someone you know is abusing opioids, please seek help. There is help available.
Risks of Opioid Abuse
Opioid abuse can cause a number of risks, including:
- Addiction: Opioid abuse can lead to addiction, which is a chronic, relapsing condition that affects how a person feels about opioids and how they use them. People with addiction may be unable to stop using opioids even if it works for them.
- Death: Opioid abuse can lead to death from overdose or from other causes, such as infections.
- Unsafe use: Opioid abuse can lead to unsafe use, which means using opioids in a way that could harm your health or the health of others. This can include using opioids without a prescription, sharing opioids with other people, and using them in ways that are dangerous, such as using them intravenously.
- Withdrawal symptoms: Opioid withdrawal symptoms can be intense and last for several days. These symptoms can include: anxiety, confusion, diarrhea, fever, irritability, nausea, vomiting, and seizures. If not treated properly, withdrawal symptoms can lead to death.
- Relapse: relapse occurs when a person relapses after recovering from an initial opioid addiction episode. This can happen for a number of reasons, including because the person becomes tolerant to opioids or relapse is triggered by stressful events. A relapse can lead to increased use of opioids and increased risk of abuse or overdose.
Opioid abuse is a serious problem that is growing in both prevalence and severity. In this article, we will provide an overview of opioid abuse including statistics, signs, and symptoms. We hope that this information will help you to identify someone who may be abusing opioids and to take the necessary steps to intervene.