Fentanyl is a pain reliever just like morphine. This drug is, however, much stronger than morphine, considering its strength can be up to one hundred times that of morphine. Due to its massive strength, a person addicted to it needs to seek help immediately. Just like morphine, Fentanyl is used to relieve chronic pain or pain resulting from medical surgery. The drug can usually only be used on those whose bodies have become tolerant to other strong pain-killing medications.
Fentanyl has the effect of altering the brain, since it’s in direct contact with the central nervous system. It therefore leads to increased euphoria in a patient, as its presence in the brain leads to increased levels of dopamine. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that controls pleasure inside the brain as well as regulating emotional responses.
A person who is abusing Fentanyl cannot make proper judgment. Using the drug for too long can drive the user away from their family and friends since the body is unable to naturally derive happiness from these people. Since the user can no longer get happiness from family and friends, they result to taking more and more Fentanyl in order to get pleasure.
Unlike MS Contin, which can only be taken orally, Fentanyl can be taken through the mouth or through injection. The drug is highly addictive due to its strong nature. Taking more than the recommended dose can lead to addiction. An overdose of Fentanyl can have severe consequences. Effects of using Fentanyl include drowsiness, unconsciousness, or a coma. Extreme cases can cause respiratory arrest.
People who have a history of drug addiction have a higher chance of developing addiction to Fentanyl. They are therefore advised to talk to their doctor about their addiction history before Fentanyl can be prescribed to them. The medication should be taken as per the directions of the doctor, as alterations could lead to addiction. An overdose of the drug can easily cause death due to its contact with the nervous system.
People with frail respiratory systems cannot use Fentanyl. Transdermal patches, which are another way of administering Fentanyl, increase the chances of the user developing addiction to the drug. The patches are meant to provide a constant dosage of the medicine. Fentanyl can also lead to fatalities if mixed with other drugs, like heroin. The mixture of Fentanyl with other drugs should be avoided at all costs.
Withdrawal from Fentanyl addictionis possible but painfully difficult. The process is always accompanied by withdrawal symptoms. These symptoms include the following:
These symptoms will go down within seven days, with most users requiring the guidance of a trained practitioner, as well as needing medication to manage the symptoms. Replacing Fentanyl with either suboxone or methadone enables the user to live a normal day-to-day life. Counseling and therapy is also important to ensure that the addict does not go back to abusing the drug again. People thinking of using the drug for pleasure should know that the possibility of death is very real.