What you might not know about opiate dependency is that it is actually different than opiate addiction. There are many people that often confuse the two and more often than not both phrases are used to describe the same exact thing. But there is definitely a difference between the two and in this article I am going to tell you exactly what that difference is so that you understand it for yourself. So let’s take a much closer look at this topic right now so that you can clearly understand the difference between opiate addiction versus opiate dependency.
What Is The Difference Between Opiate Addiction Vs. Opiate Dependency?
Before I answer this particular question, I want to give you a brief overview of exactly what opiates are so that you have a full understanding of the topic at hand.
Opiates are actually painkillers that are very powerful. These drugs are in fact prescribed by medical doctors and they technically aren’t an illegal substance although they get abused like they are. And drug addicts often obtain them illegally which is where legal problems will come into play because they are being obtained through means other than a medical prescription from a doctor.
When you take an opiate you will actually become sedated in many instances and this drug is known to bring about a very euphoric feeling to the individual who takes it. The euphoric feeling and the feeling of no pain is why this type of drug often becomes abused by drug addicts.
There are a lot of very popular and mainstream opiates that will cause individuals to suffer from an opiate dependency or an opiate addiction. The medications that I am talking about are morphine, codeine, Lorcet, OxyContin, Fentanyl, Dilaudid, heroin and Lortab. So make it a point to talk to the people you love who you think might be hooked on any of the opiates previously mentioned. This is a very difficult problem to deal with and they are going to need help and support from the people that care for them the most.
What Is Opiate Dependency?
Unfortunately, opiate dependency is definitely the worst option to have to deal with because not only are you addicted to your opiate of choice, but your body has also become physically dependent on this particular drug which makes it very difficult for you to kick your unwanted habit. The truth is that the difference between opiate dependency and opiate addiction really isn’t all that outstanding so they almost feel like they are exactly the same thing.
But the one way that opiate dependency differs from opiate addiction is that the repeated physical use of the opiates actually changes the way your brain works from a physical standpoint. Using opiates to the point where your brain has changed the physical pathways of your personal reward system. This makes it very difficult for the dependent individual to withdraw from the opiates because their body physically needs them and it’s always necessary for medical intervention to take place in order for the addict to finally kick this addiction.
Withdrawing for the opiate dependent individual is often a very intense experience. It is also often a very difficult experience for the opiate addict. The withdrawal symptoms you will probably experience if you are suffering from an opiate dependency are headaches, insomnia, pain in your muscles and bones, chills, slow breathing and constipation.
What Is Opiate Addiction?
Having an opiate addiction is different from opiate dependency because you can be addicted to your opiate of choice without actually becoming physically dependent upon this drug. So your body will not physically be hooked on the opiates that you are addicted to, but you will have a neurological addiction or a genetic predisposition that will keep you wanting to go back for more and more. But since your body isn’t physically hooked on it you are not technically suffering from an opiate dependency.
The difference between opiate addiction and opiate dependency is the physical part of this particular problem. When the body becomes physically hooked on opiates the person is known to be dependent upon this drug from a physical standpoint. But you can definitely become mentally addicted to opiates and not have a physical dependence upon the drugs whatsoever.
So there you have it. These are the major differences between opiate dependency and opiate addiction. Somebody who is dependent on opiates is going to need medical intervention while they withdraw from this particular drug. An opiate addict will not necessarily need medical intervention since their body doesn’t physically need the drug in order to function properly.