Prescription opioids are at the heart of the current opioid addiction epidemic. All Prescription opioids are addictive. Some opioid medications are more potent than others. Yet, the potential for addiction is not limited by the type or strength. Opioids are the mainstay for treating pain because they work. When someone takes an opioid medication, the brain floods their system with endorphins and dopamine, relaxing the body and minimizing pain. Prescription opioid addiction is the fourth most common addiction after nicotine, alcohol, and marijuana.
Medication-assisted treatments are evidence-based treatments that help opioid addicts get and remain clean long term.
What Are The Main Types Of Prescription Opioids?
There are hundreds of types of prescription opioids. The National Institute on Drug Abuse lists the most common opioid medications. The name brand of the opioid is how most people will recognize each one. The list from NIDA references opioids that are prescribed for mild to severe pain. Codeine is the weakest and is usually prescribed to children or the elderly. Opana is the most potent and is reserved for severe pain from injury or serious medical problems.
- hydrocodone (Vicodin®), oxycodone (OxyContin®, Percocet®)
- oxymorphone (Opana®)
- morphine (Kadian®, Avinza®)
What Is Hydromorphone?
Hydromorphone is one of the most potent opioid pain relievers. It is similar to oxycodone, morphine, methadone, fentanyl, and other opioids. However, Hydromorphone is sought after by drug addicts because most formulations of it can be diluted and then injected. The name brand for Hydromorphone is Dilaudid. Like all opioids, Hydromorphone stimulates receptors on nerves in the brain to reduce pain. Dilaudid is also used in hospital settings frequently as it is a fast-acting opioid. Dilaudid is stronger than morphine, and that is why many people favor it.
1 MG OF INTRAVENOUS HYDROMORPHONE IS EQUIVALENT TO 4 MG OF MORPHINE. (HHS)
Why Is Dilaudid Overprescribed?
Hydromorphone as Dilaudid is considered the cure-all when other pain medications don’t work because of how fast it enters the brain and treats pain. Unfortunately, doctors do not consider the addictive nature of Dilaudid, just the patient’s pain, which is understandable. Still, there are safer practices for minimizing pain, even in an emergency room at the hospital. The Department of Health and Human Services insists that medical doctors complete a risk benefits assessment for the patient when prescribing opioids. The Risk/Benefits calculations weigh the risks and the benefits of opioids for pain management.
“IT IS VITAL TO CONSIDER A RISK-BENEFIT ANALYSIS TO PROVIDE THE BEST POSSIBLE PATIENT-CENTERED OUTCOME WHILE MITIGATING UNNECESSARY OPIOID EXPOSURE. TO AVOID THE SIDE EFFECTS ASSOCIATED WITH PRESCRIPTION OPIOIDS (E.G., NAUSEA, VOMITING, CONSTIPATION, SEDATION, OUD), IT IS IMPORTANT TO EXPLOIT THE BENEFITS OF MULTIMODAL, NON-OPIOID APPROACHES IN ACUTE PAIN MANAGEMENT IN CONJUNCTION WITH POSSIBLE OPIOID THERAPY.” (HHS)
Who Can Get Addicted To Prescription Opioids?
The people who are most likely to get addicted to an opioid such as Hydromorphone are those who have a history of addiction or alcoholism, an undiagnosed or diagnosed mental health disorder, or someone with a family history of alcohol or drug abuse. However, the fact is that anyone can become addicted to opioids even if they have never had a problem with addiction. Opioids are so addictive because they drastically change how a person feels physically and mentally. For example, hydromorphone will make someone feel the following within 15 minutes of use:
- Extremely relaxed and content with their surroundings
- Warm physical rushes all over
- They will become sleepy
- They will experience euphoria and a trance like state of mind
What Treatment Is Available For Hydromorphone Addiction?
At ARIA, we are proud to offer the full range of prescription opioid addiction treatment programs, from the most intensive to the most flexible and least intensive. We first provide medically supervised opioid detox that establishes the foundation of physical health so our patients can enter their rehab program without concern for withdrawal symptoms. Our prescription opioid rehab programs from the most intensive treatment through long-term aftercare include Residential Treatment, Partial Hospitalization, Intensive Outpatient, Outpatient Treatment, and Aftercare for lifelong support.
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The longer you put off your recovery, the more likely you will face an emergency or death. Please call us to end the addiction safely. We have the solutions and medications to help you! Call now for immediate admission and chat or email for more help.