Have you seen some strange behavior recently?

Have you wondered if they are addicted to some substance?

These are serious questions to ask yourself if you believe that your loved one, friend, classmate, co-worker, spouse or neighbor may have an opioid addiction.

Opioid Addiction comes from using one or more of the following drugs (www.drugabuse.com):

  1. Heroin (the most popular)
  2. Codeine
  3. Oxycodone
  4. Morphine
  5. Fenatyl
  6. Hydrocodone

According to www.drugabuse.com, “opioids” can be defined as:

prescription opiates. Technically, the concept of “opiates” encompasses drugs naturally derived from the active narcotic components of the opium poppy, whereas the “opioid” label includes synthetic and semi-synthetic drugs that are modified versions of these opiate building blocks. “Opioid” is usually used in reference to prescription drugs. 

Opioids are so addictive, that the addiction begins immediately after using the drug. You will see the symptoms fairly quickly. Here are Ten Red Flags of Opioid Addiction that you are likely to see:

  1. Nodding off/loss of consciousness/drowsiness: They seem to be sleepy all the time and tend to fall asleep at inappropriate times.
  2. Confusion: They are perplexed and disoriented by even the simplest situations.
  3. Elated or euphoric: Excited about even the most mundane. Their moods will jump to the highest of happiness before dropping to the lowest of depression.
  4. Slow breathing: They are not breathing normally (12-20 breaths per minute). An opioid addict typically breathes an abnormal 12 or less breaths per minute.
  5. Withdrawal from social situations: They are no longer interested in spending time with their friends, colleagues or family. Instead, they will isolate themselves in their home, office, cubicle, room or another place where people are unlikely to see them or socialize with them.
  6. Digestive issues: Opioid addicts tend to have constipation and other digestive problems.
  7. Mood shifts: Their moods turn on a dime as in happy one moment and angry the next. Their is no longer any anger management. Their temper may flare to the point of violence.
  8. Large numbers of pill bottles in the trash: Opioid addicts take large numbers of opiates each week meaning the trash can will be full of empty pill bottles. (See Red Flag #10.)
  9. Financial Problems: Opioid addiction often results in financial strain or even bankruptcy as opiates are expensive. The addict will spend much of their money on the drug and fall behind on rent, mortgage, utilities and other important monthly expenses. Bankruptcy may result.
  10. Doctor Shopping: The opioid addict goes from physician to physician acquiring multiple opiate prescriptions to feed their addiction.

They may try to hide it and even be successful for a brief period of time. However, opioid addiction cannot be covered up for long.

Sooner or later, their roller coaster moods will reveal themselves. The pill bottles fall out of their pocketbook, they come begging to you for money to pay for their rent or they withdraw to their cubicle or home and avoid any social contact with you or others. These are serious signs of a possible opioid addiction.

Whatever you do, don’t wait until it gets worse or even results in their death. Recommend opioid treatment right away. You, and they, will not regret it.

If you, a family member, or friend have an opioid addiction and need treatment, please have them contact a licensed counselor at the Concerted Care Group.

The Concerted Care Group provides comprehensive methadone treatment. We utilize the “Whole Person, Whole Life” philosophy of substance abuse treatment. It integrates medical, psychological, vocational, economic, and social expertise to literally “wrap around” the patient and the patient’s lifestyle. It doesn’t matter if you have an opioid addiction, heroin addiction, prescription drug addiction, methadone addiction, painkiller addiction or some other substance abuse addiction. We treat them all and do it under one roof.

Contact our outpatient clinic in Baltimore, Maryland at (410) 617-0142 or email at info@concertedcaregroup.com. We accept patients that same day, too.