Opiate drugs are without a doubt the biggest problem in the nation today when it comes to drug and alcohol addiction and substance abuse in general. Opiate drugs, by themselves, are actually more troublesome and more dangerous than all other drugs combined. Certainly, these substances cause more problems and more issues and difficulties than all of the other drugs out there do. Opiates kill more Americans than all other drugs, and opiates cause more accidents and more injuries and more problems than all other drugs combined do.
The big problem with opiates is that here is basically a drug that brings about a chemical dependency issue and a mental addiction issue in the same breath. Opiates cause a person to become addicted on a chemical and a physical level just as badly as they cause addiction to occur on a mental and a psychological level. Truly, opiates create problems after problems after problems after problems in not only those who abuse the substances but in the hearts and minds of the family members and loved ones of those addicts.
The Opiate Drugs that are the Most Common
There are a lot of opiates out there. A lot of them. The sad truth is that there are now illegal opiates and legal ones too. There are opiates that are very illegal and that create terrible repercussions such as heroin. Then there are also legal and supposedly safe and even supposedly helpful opiates such as opiate prescription pain relievers that people are abusing and becoming addicted to. Listed below are five of the most common opiates in use today:
- Heroin. Heroin is an opiate and derives from morphine. It has the same chemical ingredients that many painkillers do. It has been around for centuries, and it is currently more common and popular now in the United States than it ever has been before.
- Hydrocodone. Also known as Vicodin, Hydrocodone is a very common, everyday painkiller that is used regularly. The drug has been popular for over three decades now and is considered perhaps one of the most common, household, day use prescription painkillers.
- Methadone. Methadone is another opiate drug that is legal. It is very strong and very, very addictive. It essentially doubles as legalized heroin. The drug is dangerous and life-threatening if it is abused. For those who take the drug on a regular basis, they become immensely addicted to it. Methadone maintenance programs, unfortunately, cause people to become hooked on these drugs. Methadone creates powerful chemical dependency issues that are actually harder to detox off of than heroin or other opiates are.
- Fentanyl. Fentanyl is a very, very powerful pain reliever drug. It is used in surgeries in hospitals, but now doctors have started prescribing it as a day use painkiller. One pill of Fentanyl is anywhere from ten to a hundred times more powerful and potent than basic dosages of Morphine are. This drug is very addictive and should stay in hospitals as it was intended to be.
- Oxycodone. Oxycodone is perhaps the most common of painkillers that are in use today. This drug has been bandied about left and right all across the United States and has been in constant, ever-present use since the turn of the century. In fact, between 2001 and 2005 the pharmaceutical manufacturing of Oxycodone increased by well over three-hundred percent. The effects of this have now been that there are over three million Americans who are legitimately addicted to opiates.
Opiate addiction has gotten incredibly out of hand in the United States. This has been an ongoing and very concerning problem that has made immensely negative effects all across the United States. Tens of thousands die, millions become addicted, and only a few hundred thousand are able to beat their addictions every year. The key focus needs to be on getting those who are addicted to opiates into and through inpatient, residential, drug and alcohol addiction and dependence treatment centers, detox facilities, rehab programs, and recovery organizations. This more than anything else will create successes and changes in this dangerous and troubling situation.