Opioids are a class of drugs that include prescription painkillers, such as oxycodone, hydrocodone (Vicodin) and codeine, and the illicit street drug heroin. Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid, which carries 100 times the potency level of morphine. It has become a highly abused drug with fatal consequences. Used primarily to treat post-surgical or chronic pain, opioids are extremely addictive and must be carefully prescribed and monitored.
Opioids slow down the brain’s ability to function, which causes the user to feel drowsy and have difficulty with cognitive skills. They can cause slowed breathing which can put the user at risk of coma or even death. The National Institute on Drug Abuse says that as many as 29 percents of patients prescribed opioids misuse them and 4 to 6 percent transition to heroin. If you or someone you know are struggling with opioid addiction, reach out to our Panama City Beach opioid addiction treatment center today.
Every single day, 115 people are dying from an opioid-related overdose. Just as with nearly every state in the U.S., opioid overdosing in Panama City Beach, FL has become a heartbreaking and tragic trend. It is affecting communities across the nation – emotionally and financially. Children are losing parents, people are losing friends and loved ones and Emergency Management Systems are strained with skyrocketing emergency calls and expediential costs for lifesaving overdose reversal medications like naloxone. Don’t wait, if you or someone you know are struggling with opioid addiction, call our opioid rehab center today and begin your journey to a new life.
According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Florida deaths rates from drug overdoses has increased 137 percent and there has been a 200 percent increase in opioid overdosing deaths (including both opioid pain relievers and heroin).
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Opioid Addiction Treatment Center in Panama City, FL
Opioids are a class of drugs that can be highly addictive and even deadly when misused. Some opioids, such as prescription opioids like OxyContin, Percocet, Vicodin, morphine, and fentanyl are commonly used in hospital settings or for outpatient purposes (such as after an operation or to treat pain associated with a physical problem). Millions of people use opioids like these as directed by a medical professional with no problem. Some, however, end up using outside of the prescribing guidelines, which can cause addiction to develop. Other opioids, such as heroin and opium, are illicit opioids that currently have no medical purpose. They are just as addictive and can cause the same destructive effects as prescription opioids.
When opioids are abused, they interrupt the regular functioning of the brain. The brain produces its own naturally-occurring opioids that bind to opioid receptors, producing feelings of calm and relaxation. These same opioids also help control the brain’s reward system. Opioids that are abused immediately bind to the same opioid receptors in the brain, which then produces an excess of dopamine, a neurotransmitter responsible for producing a sense of reward, gratification, and pleasure. The brain is naturally wired to continually desire achieving that same feeling of euphoria that is produced when abusing opioids, which is partly where cravings come from. The more that opioids are abused, the more that the brain wants to keep getting high.
Unfortunately, the continued act of abusing opioids is only going to cause several problems for a user. For example, the more that he or she abuses opioids, the more he or she will have to increase how much of an opioid he or she abuses because both the body and mind have developed a tolerance to this substance. Once tolerant on opioids, it is only a matter of time before a user is dependent on them, which can lead to fatal effects if untreated.
Opioid Overdose Statistics
Today, 130 people in the United States die each day because of opioid overdoses. An overdose on opioids occurs when a person consumes an amount of opioids that his or her body simply cannot process. All overdoses do not just occur when a person uses too many opioids, but they can also occur when an opioid is consumed that is high in potency. This is currently a major problem for those who abuse heroin, as thousands of stashes throughout the country are being cut with fentanyl, an opioid more than 100 times more potent than morphine.
In 2017, approximately 68% of all drug overdoses involved opioids. The amount of opioid-related overdose deaths was six times higher than those occurring in 1999. Since the turn of the century, more than 700,000 people have died from an opioid-related overdose. That is the equivalent of the entire population of Washington, D.C.
Signs of an Opioid Overdose
Opioid overdoses are highly common throughout the United States. It is so common, in fact, that first responders, people who are prescribed opioids, and those who know one or more opioid users can carry Narcan, a prescription medication that reverses the effects of opioid overdose if administered in time. Narcan, which is the brand name for naloxone, has saved almost 27,000 lives since it has become more widespread throughout the public. Sadly, Narcan is not guaranteed to work, as it is imperative to administer it during a specific window of time after the overdose. Plus, sometimes it is not effective due to extremely large amounts of opioids being in the system.
Opioid overdoses are not always dramatic and blatantly obvious, which is why it is so important to know what the signs of opioid overdose are. They include:
- Shallow breathing
- Slowed breathing
- Clammy skin
- Pale face
- Limpness in the body
- Lips and/or fingernails turning blue or purple
When an opioid overdose is occurring, it is considered a serious medical emergency. People who are witnessing an overdose should never try to bring the person to the hospital on his or her own or waste any time trying to figure out what to do. Instead, they should call 911 immediately. They can administer Narcan if they have it in their possession and know how to use it. All first responders, including firefighters, carry Narcan and will administer this medication straight away upon their arrival.
Benefits of our Opioid Addiction Treatment Center in Panama City, FL
At our opioid addiction treatment center in Panama City, FL, we at JourneyPure Emerald Coast provide a multitude of services designed to address a person’s physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health. With unique and individualized treatment programs designed based on the needs of the patient, he or she stands to benefit significantly while attending our opioid addiction treatment center in Panama City, FL.
Our treatment program can benefit individuals in recovery by:
- Providing medically-assisted detox services, where patients are made as physically and psychologically comfortable as possible while experiencing withdrawal symptoms
- Immediately ceasing any further damage caused by the use of opioids simply by being a drug-free zone
- Giving patients therapeutic opportunities to identify and address the issues that contributed to or developed as a result of their opioid addiction
- Providing patients with a safe and private environment to recover in where there are no temptations to use
- Connecting patients to one another in an effort to help them heal together and serve as a support system with one another
Our opioid addiction treatment center in Panama City, FL can be as beneficial to a patient as he or she makes it. With the right attitude and the desire to recover, paired with the guidance, support, and expertise of the JourneyPure Emerald Coast team, all patients have the opportunity to build happy, healthy, and sober lives.
Get Professional Help at Our Opioid Addiction Treatment Center in Panama City, FL
The only way to prevent an opioid overdose is to not use opioids at all. If you are addicted to opioids but do not know how to stop, reach out to us right now. We are ready to help you get on the road to recovery and to make your active opioid addiction a thing of the past for good.