Addiction has always been considered to be a disease of both the mind and the body. Nowadays, the term addiction is most commonly associated with drug abuse.
In the United States, there is a growing number of individuals who are suffering from this disease.
According to a report released by the National Household Survey on Drug Abuse, about 9 percent of the entire American population is addicted to pain killers.
In order to understand why millions of people are suffering from this deadly addiction, it would be best to know how it starts.
Among the main pills in the market, the most likely to be abused are the opioid medications, which contain morphine or codeine.
More commonly, health practitioners prescribe the non-opioid drugs because they do not contain addictive substances.
But when the hurting can no longer be tolerated, the opioid drugs are finally prescribed.
Unfortunately, the body easily becomes dependent and then tolerant and the initial dose no longer works. When this happens, the dosage is increased.
As time passes, your body becomes accustomed to the presence of the opiates in your system and removing the would result to severe withdrawal symptoms. Without realizing it, you have become addicted.
Withdrawal symptoms experienced when suffering from opiate addiction include chills and shakes, headaches, insomnia, nausea, diarrhea, sweating and clammy skin, and stomach pain.
Experiencing any of these symptoms when you stop taking your prescription is a sure sign that you have a dependency problem. Unfortunately, you might need professional help before you can kick this nasty addiction.
In most cases, you will need to enter a detox facility for opiate addiction where trained doctors can help manage your withdrawal symptoms.
In addition to this, you can join support groups composed of people who are going through the same things as you.
Many people are surprise to find out that pain killer addiction is pretty much identical to heroin addiction. A lot of people who are addicted to opiate pills often switch to heroin because it is much cheaper.
Pretty much everyone who uses heroin says that they NEVER imagined themselves ever touching that drug.
But when you are up against the disease of addiction, anything can happen.
Not to mention that when the withdrawal kicks in, you will do anything to get rid of it, including heroin. Imagine the sickest you have ever been, now imagine being ten times sicker than that; that is what withdrawal is like.
Some individuals come out of detox facilities fully-treated. On the other hand, there are those who relapse time and time again.
These individuals usually have trouble controlling themselves especially when it comes to the abuse of opiates.
As soon as they start using opiates, even at a low dose, they are inevitably addicted once again. In no time at all, they will have developed physical dependence and after a short time, tolerance.
Now that you have an idea how a person can eventually succumb to an addiction to opiate pills and have that quickly lead to heroin addiction, you must also be aware of the risk factors.
Many health experts believe that family history plays a major role as well as psychological issues.
Rehabilitation from opiate addiction may involve psychotherapy as well, in order to address control issues as well as other personal problems that lead to this drugs abuse.