Over 4 million Americans are currently using prescription pain relievers (Opiates) non-medically. The abuse of painkillers has increased at a much more rapid rate when compared to other drugs of misuse. Opiate drugs are highly addictive and are used illicitly (Illegally) to achieve a state of euphoria or “high”.

Common Prescription Pain Killers (opiates): Darvon, Codeine, Denerol, Vicodin, Loracet, Morphine, Oxycontin, Percodan, Percocet, Fentanyl, Hydrocodone, Vicoprofen, Lortab

Some of the other potential short-term effects of painkiller abuse can include:

  • Slurred speech
  • Staggering or becoming clumsy
  • Unusual sweating
  • Nausea,Vomiting
  • Dilated or constricted pupils
  • Dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Constipation

Potential Signs of Prescription painkiller overdose:

  • Slow or difficult breathing, or not breathing at all
  • Unconsciousness
  • Coma
  • Convulsions
  • Cold, clammy skin
  • Pinpoint pupils
  • Death

Potential long-term effects of prescription painkiller abuse:

  • Tolerance for painkillers, meaning a normal, safe dose no longer controls pain
  • A greater risk for abusing or becoming addicted to other drugs, especially in young people
  • Damage to a person’s brain and his or her ability to learn, especially if the person abusing painkillers is young
  • Addiction to painkillers

Signs and symptoms of opiate withdrawal:

  • Psychological pain
  • Restlessness
  • Muscle and bone pain
  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Cold flashes