The Opioid Epidemic has shown no signs of slowing down. While the attention remains on heroin and fentanyl, the reality is that of the 48,000 opioid overdose deaths- 17,000 involved prescription painkillers. (1) In fact, many researchers actually place a significant amount of blame on prescription painkillers for sparking the Opioid Epidemic. (2)
Here we take a look at two of the most popular painkiller medications: morphine and Dilaudid.
What is Morphine?
Morphine is a naturally occurring opiate that is extracted from the opium poppy. Morphine has been used as a pharmaceutical painkiller since 1827, and continues to be commonly used today. Morphine also has a long history of abuse.
Traditionally, morphine was abused by smoking opium, for which it is the primary ingredient. Today, pharmaceutical preparations of morphine are the most commonly abused form. (3)
What is Dilaudid?
Dilaudid is the brand name for the semi-synthetic prescription painkiller hydromorphone. Dilaudid is approximately five times stronger than morphine when injected. (4) In recent years, Dilaudid has become a popular drug of abuse, particularly in areas where street drugs like heroin are less common. (5)
What are the effects of Dilaudid and Morphine?
Dilaudid and morphine both produce similar effects to each other and other opioids. The signs and symptoms of Dilaudid and morphine abuse include the following (6) (7):
- Sense of well-being
- Nausea and vomiting
- Pinned pupils
What are the withdrawal symptoms of Dilaudid and Morphine?
Long-term morphine and/or Dilaudid use leads to a physical and physiological dependence on the drug, and ultimately addiction. Once an individual has become addicted to opioids, a severe withdrawal syndrome will occur if he or she suddenly stops taking the medication. Opioid withdrawal symptoms include:
- Severe anxiety
- Nausea and vomiting
- Flu-like symptoms
- Teary eyes and frequent yawning
- Cold and hot flashes (8)
This article is intended for those considering a new way of life, free of the pain of drug and alcohol addiction. For more information on recovery and anyone seeking help with addiction and substance abuse problems, please call True Recovery at (844) 744-8783 or visit us online.