Don't Know What To Do?
- Article Summary
- Fentanyl Side Effects
- Fentanyl Addiction
- Fentanyl Withdrawal
- Fentanyl Overdose
- Fentanyl Drug Treatment
Fentanyl is reported to be an opioid pain medication that has been classified as a narcotic which is commonly used in the treatment of breakthrough cancer pain or in cases of other types of severe pain that cannot be managed with the use of any other type of pain medication. Fentanyl is reported to be over 80 times stronger than morphine, and is available by prescription only; this powerful pain medication is marketed under such brand names as Haldid, Abstral, Matrifen, and Lazanda, just to name a select few. Fentanyl functions in a way that is similar to morphine; the potent pain medication acts on receptors in the brain and the spinal cord by way of decreasing the person's sense of severe pain.
Fentanyl is commonly prescribed by doctors in the form of transdermal patches, lollipops or tablets. Fentanyl patches were specifically developed in order to be able to deliver a constant stream of pain relief over a period of 2-3 days; a Fentanyl lollipop was introduced shortly after the patch, and was officially the first quick-acting form of the powerful drug. Currently in the U.S., researchers are investigating many new methods to deliver this powerful prescription pain reliever, including developing a spray that cancer patients will be able to easily administer under their tongue.
Unfortunately, Fentanyl is reported to be an extremely popular drug of abuse for addicts to seek out; in most instances, the pill form of the drug is crushed for the purpose of snorting or injecting. Recently, the FDA has approved of form of Fentanyl that is a small disc which is to be placed under the mouth. Fentanyl in this form will be delivered through a new technology which is called BEMA (Fentanyl buccal soluble film); this most recent form of the drug will not be able to be broken or crushed.
Fentanyl Side Effects
Fentanyl has many different side effects, but some of the most common ones that are associated with the use of the drug include, but are not limited to: dry mouth, vomiting, constipation, nausea, fatigue, excessive sweating, weakness and confusion. Some less common side effects of this powerful pain medication include extreme nervousness, loss of appetite, diarrhea, headache, dizziness, hallucinations, and respiratory problems. The side effects of Fentanyl that could lead to serious discomfort or even death in some individuals include but are not limited to: insufficient blood oxygen levels, and severe allergic reactions that include, facial swelling, hives, respiratory depression, or in some cases, death. Severe consequences from Fentanyl use can occur in individuals who have a history of substance abuse, seizures, kidney problems, and breathing disorders such as asthma or COPD.
Fentanyl is reported to be highly addictive, because it is such a highly potent drug; even when the pain medication has been administered exactly as it is prescribed for only a very short period of time, many patients have reported becoming addicted to the drug. Fentanyl is also an extremely popular drug of abuse; addicts report that they can experience a high that is similar to the high that they receive upon injecting heroin. Many Fentanyl addicts have reported smoking, snorting or injecting the drug, in an attempt to feel the effects of this medication more quickly; as an individual's addiction escalates, they will go to any lengths to obtain Fentanyl, including purchasing the drug illegally on the street, doctor shopping and forging prescriptions.
Because Fentanyl is such a powerful drug, this pain medication is reported to be hard to detox from; unfortunately, patients who have developed an addiction to this medication will quickly begin to experience a host of uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms, shortly after taking their last dose of this drug. The withdrawal symptoms that are most commonly associated with the Fentanyl detox process include, but are not necessarily limited to: runny or stuffed up nose, anxiety, constipation, hot and cold flashes, extreme irritability, loss of appetite, insomnia, back and leg pain, muscle aches, confusion, tremors, and severe abdominal pain. Other more serious side effects that have often been reported to also be life-threatening include, but are not limited to: a serious allergic reaction which is marked by severe respiratory complications, tongue swelling and skin rash, liver damage, and respiratory failure.
Because some of the withdrawal symptoms that are commonly associated with a Fentanyl abuse problem are often so severe and could potentially be deadly, a person should only under the detox process under the supervision of caring detox professionals in the context of a quality drug rehab program. No matter how strong a person's motivation to be free from Fentanyl, it would be virtually impossible for a person to overcome a drug that is so extremely powerful without an intense amount of professional support.
A Fentanyl overdose can occur when a person has too much of the drug in their system than the body is able to effectively process. The most prominent sign of a Fentanyl overdose is reported to be central nervous system depression, which would include signs such as a decrease in heart rate and breathing; other overdose symptoms may include, but are not limited to seizures, pinpoint pupils, cold and clammy skin, and coma, which could result in death.
It is essential to treat a Fentanyl overdose as the very first hint that there may be a problem; treatment for this type of a condition may include administering activated charcoal to reduce the amount of the drug in the bloodstream. Treatment may also include the administration of Narcan, which is a popular drug antidote, or administering oxygen when respiratory problems are present.
Fentanyl Drug Treatment
The most effective way to successfully overcome a Fentanyl addiction is to find a quality drug rehab center that has a proven track record in treating individuals with this type of a severe substance abuse problem. A drug treatment program can offer individual and group behavioral counseling, drug relapse prevention education, and an adequate level of aftercare. Overcoming an addiction to Fentanyl will not be easy, but your chances of success will increase dramatically with professional drug treatment.
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