Effects of Opiates on the Brain


One of the most abused drugs in the United States is Opiates. They are readily prescribed and are easy to purchase and acquire. What makes it worse is that, they are also very addictive which in many cases is a disaster to ruin one’s health and life.

Opiates contain a lot of substances including thebaine, heroin, and morphine and have similar effects. These extremely addictive elements are called opiates. They are obtained from chemicals present in the sap of opium poppy. In the Afghan mountain areas, these are one of the top money making businesses. Medicinal opioids have the same effects and actions as normal opiates. These include drugs like fentanyl, oxycodone, and hydrocodone. These drugs are very beneficial with the suppression of cough with extreme lung conditions and pain management. In regard to what was mentioned earlier, they have a downfall as they are very addictive and are quite easy to be prescribed and purchased.

With regards to managing and controlling pain, opiates are very efficient and very effective. Unlike other prescription drugs that are high in price, opiates are also relatively affordable. One drug that has been used for a very long time is morphine and it is still the usual drug of choice by certain doctors to control and manage pain.

Opiates that have quicker or faster effects harvest a certain “high” of some sort, wherein the high is much more extreme. Heroin and Morphine give certain amounts of high but have different durations. Heroin’s high would only last around 15 to 30 minutes. However, morphine would have an extreme effect from 4 to 6 hours, well of course, depending on the amount that is ingested or put in the body and, the body’s tolerance to the mentioned drugs. The short-term effects of opiate use to the brain and body are euphoria, sedation, drowsiness, and pain relief.

Dopamine and Opiates

Opiates start the discharge of dopamine in our brains, which results in feelings of euphoria and pleasure. These feelings would initiate the drug addiction and it was found out that the addiction would start in less than three days of use. Certain side effects to the brain and the body would include lethargy, paranoia, drowsiness, nausea, and respiratory depression.

Opiates have a very harsh effect on our brains. Like alcohol abuse, driving under the influence of opiates can hinder our decision making and reaction times. Hence, a vehicular accident is more likely to occur and you could lose your driver’s license permanently and be imprisoned. Opiates also cause your irises to relax, which is often difficult to disguise so it is easily distinguished by trained professionals.

The long-term effects of opiate abuse and ingestion to the brain and body are vomiting, abdominal bloating, constipation, permanent liver damage, and permanent brain damage due to hypoxia, high tolerance, and mental dependence.

The most popular effect of opiates to the brain is mainly addiction and dependence. In addition, codeine, a usually prescribed drug to relieve pain, is also quite addictive. If you know and experience the effects of opiate abuse, it is advised that you contact and seek professional help. You do not want to have permanent brain failure and eventually die due to addiction.

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