Narcotics Abuse

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the Take-Away

Narcotics abuse is a growing trend that is leaving the users with uncomfortable side effects and withdrawal symptoms. Narcotics are typically used to treat pain but people with an addiction take it for the high they can get.

Narcotics abuse is a major problem of growing concern in the United States. Millions of people suffer from some form of abusive use of narcotics such as opiates, prescription pain medications, cocaine, crack, or other drugs.  It’s not only the people using these dangerous drugs who are suffering but the friends, family members, co-workers and loved ones of those addicted are also suffering a great deal as a result of narcotics abuse. If you think that narcotics abuse is impacting your life, call our helpline at (800) 407-7195 for immediate assistance. We can connect you with a counselor, therapist or treatment professional who can help you overcome the pain of narcotics abuse before the situations turns into a potential fatal disease.

What is Narcotics Abuse?

If you’re wondering exactly what constitutes narcotics abuse versus narcotics addiction, consider this: narcotics abuse is any abusive use of a drug such as a painkiller, opiate, heroin, cocaine or other drug.  This can include using a prescription in a manner other than the doctor prescribed or it may include using a drug for recreational purposes.  Narcotics abuse is not necessarily addiction but it can lead to addiction if the abusive use of the drugs continue. Studies show that more than one half of the American population has abused a narcotic at least once in their lifetime and many continue to abuse these drugs on a regular basis.  Not all narcotics abusers will become addiction but many will face the challenge of becoming physically dependent on these drugs and having to go through the process of detox, withdrawal and addiction treatment in order to get well.

How Does Narcotics Abuse Develop?

Narcotics Abuse

Narcotics abuse can cause mood swings.

Narcotics abuse can develop in a variety of different ways but most often it starts with recreational or moderate use of a drug that spirals out of control.  According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, any people are prescribed narcotics for the purpose of the treatment of pain or other conditions.  After taking the drug that they are prescribed for a period of time, the effects seemingly wear off and the drug no longer works like it should.  As time progresses, the user may feel like he or she has to take more of the drug in order to feel the same pain relief or other desired effects.  This is called tolerance. As tolerance to narcotics develops, the user continues to take more of the drug to produce the same desired effect.  If the drug is being used excessively, more often than it should be or in a manner in which it is not intended then abuse has developed. Narcotics abuse can lead to addiction if the abusive use of the drugs is allowed to continue to a point in which physical dependence and an inability to control the drug use occurs.

Symptoms of Narcotics Abuse

  • Taking more medication than the doctor prescribed
  • Taking medication more often than prescribed
  • Taking narcotics for recreational use
  • Taking the drugs to feel “high”
  • Using narcotics to mask pain, emotions or other problems
  • Using narcotics to feel good
  • Physical dependence symptoms or withdrawal when narcotics are not used
  • Using narcotics despite known consequences or problems
  • Mood swings when drugs are not available

Signs of Narcotics Abuse

Narcotics abuse can lead to lasting consequences and effects that are difficult to treat.  The long term effects of narcotics abuse can lead to addiction which will require professional treatment in order to help the patient heal.  Sustained narcotics abuse may result in lifelong physical complications and with some narcotics there is also a risk of psychological complications occurring as well.

For more information about narcotics abuse and treatment options, call (800) 407-7195.