Morphine Addiction Information

Morphine is a powerful painkiller derived from the synthetic opiate, of the poppy plant. It is in the same class of drugs as heroin. It affects the central nervous system by stimulating the creation of neuprenephrine and dopamine receptors, responsible for feelings of happiness and well being. Thus, the cycle of craving “reward” sensations over and over again constitutes a dangerous recipe for addiction. Users are also prone to morphine addiction. Morphine also has the capacity to invoke other side effects such as:
  • Euphoria
  • Reduces the reflexes responsible for coughing
  • Relaxation
  • Decreased appetite
  • Constipation
  • Irregular menstrual cycles in women
  • Lowered libido
  • Impaired motor coordination

woman consoles friend who has morphine addictionIt is clear that morphine has the potential to stimulate an addiction. An addiction to morphine is derived from psychological obsessions about the drug in conjunction with a physical craving. Addiction is identified as the compulsive need to seek out and use morphine despite an onset of negative outcomes. For example, a person who uses morphine recreationally a handful of times is not an addict if this person does not continue to expend effort in seeking it out after the first use.

On the other hand, consider a teenager who is administered a morphine drip in the hospital after an accident. Upon returning home, the teen begins, and goes to any lengths to get a high from morphine. An addiction is involved. Red flags of morphine addiction include:

  • Developing a tolerance- requiring larger doses of morphine to experience the same effects.
  • Spends money strictly on morphine- to the extent that he begins selling his possessions for cash.
  • Lying and manipulating friends in order to cover up morphine abuse.
  • Continuing use after receiving consequences, seeing things fall by the way side.
  • Drug abuse causes his family ties to suffer.
  • Extracurricular activities become nonexistent.
  • Compulsively abusing morphine.
  • An inability to stop even after becoming aware that repeated patterns of morphine abuse is detrimental to health.
  • After a period of time, he logically desires to stop using morphine, but finds himself helplessly engaged in the same behaviors to seek out the drug.

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In order to kick a morphine addiction many require professional help. Help is available via treatment facilities around the country, specializing in drug and alcohol rehabilitation. Detoxification from morphine is a painful and uncomfortable process. Rehabilitation center clinicians can help mitigate the side effects with counter-indicative drugs and a carefully monitored nutrition regimen. Cessation of consistent morphine ingestion induces the following withdrawal symptoms:

  • Chills and sweats
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Restlessness
  • Irritability
  • Yawning and tearing

Without a medical detoxification from morphine, users are susceptible to stroke, heart attack, and in some cases, death. Methadone is commonly administered to help ease the withdrawal effects. However, this method of detoxification is controversial in that many morphine addicts simply transfer addictions from morphine to Methadone and then struggle to wean themselves off of Methadone. Others argue that the cost and benefit analysis of administering Methadone versus not administering Methadone tips the scale in Methadone’s favor, given the dangerous consequences of kicking morphine without medical intervention.

Many rehab centers encourage rest, alternative therapy sessions throughout the detox period, and various homeopathic remedies in combination with western medicine. Withdrawing from morphine is both physically debilitating as well as mentally difficult. In early sobriety, the recovering addict faces many challenges, including:

  • Feelings of grief and mourning the loss of a “friend”
  • Guilt and shame
  • Fears of how they are going to live life without drugs
  • Resistance to integrating spirituality into their recovery
  • Anxiety about leaving group of using friends for a new group of friends
  • Trouble accepting alternative ways to spend time rather than drug using

You may have heard of the “soldier’s disease” which refers to the phenomenon of morphine addiction experienced by injured soldiers following the American Civil War. The injured soldiers were injected with morphine in preparation of a surgical procedure. After discharging, over 400,000 soldiers returned home craving for morphine. This historical truth illustrates the potent, highly addictive properties of morphine.

Once a morphine addict has several weeks of recovery under their belt, they explore alternative ways of living. Instead of surrounding themselves with other drug users or falling privy to cross-addiction – such as replacing morphine addiction with a sex addiction or shopping addiction – the morphine addict adopts a new group of friends and participate in new activities. Morphine addicts in recovery often realize that they harbor an underlying passion for art, equestrian racing, or music theory, for example.

With the new set of tools from a rehabilitation center or outpatient program, the recovering morphine addict can face life’s stressors in healthy ways. The recovering morphine addict no longer reaches for drugs as a coping mechanism for life’s challenges. He or she makes sure that upon leaving the inpatient rehabilitation center, a full list of relapse prevention tools, time-filling engagements, phone numbers of other recovering addicts, and Narcotics Anonymous meetings is in their possession. Drug rehabilitation professionals will help the morphine addict design an aftercare plan encompassing all of these things. This way, the recovering morphine addict has a game plan and a strategy for health and success. Relapses are avoidable. All that is necessary for a morphine addict to stay clean and sober is a willingness to change, and an open mind.