Codeine is an opiate. It’s also an ingredient in various common medications, one example being cough syrups. However, as an opiate, codeine can be habit-forming if it is abused. The chance of individuals abusing codeine have increased over the years due to the prescription opioid epidemic. Many individuals who have inadvertently become dependent upon opioids have turned to using codeine to meet the needs of their dependency. Therefore, it’s necessary to educate yourself about the effects of codeine abuse. Doing so will put you in a stronger position to find the appropriate addiction treatment for either yourself or a loved one. Sante Center offers a wide range of substance abuse treatment and numerous therapeutic services. to help those struggling with codeine addiction to heal and overcome it.
Who Abuses Codeine?
Codeine abuse is more widespread than you might think. Rap culture has glorified it as an ingredient in Purple Drank since the 1980s. High schoolers and club cooks use it to make Sizzurp, which is a mix of cough syrup and soda. However, these are extreme examples. The vast majority of individuals who abuse codeine get it via prescription either illicitly or by other disingenuous means.
Effects of Codeine Abuse
The immediate effects of codeine abuse include a gradual onset of euphoria. You feel good. A hefty dose of the drug affects a dopamine glut in the brain. You’ll also feel a little drunk.
Some people have what they describe as an out-of-body experience. They feel like they’re outside their bodies and watch themselves. Depending on your history with drugs, this can then turn into a bad trip. You may suffer a panic attack.
Of course, there isn’t a precise dosing. The high is a hit or miss. And because codeine comes in combinations with acetaminophen, there is a real risk of liver failure. However, there are also other side effects.
Codeine, as an opiate, can cause severe constipation. You may develop a rash. It also causes dry mouth that can result in oral health problems. Confusion is a condition that sets in with high doses.
The Danger of Using Codeine to Get High
Codeine abuse can be dangerous to your health. However, they can also be deadly. If you take too much of the opiate, your breathing can slow. Your heart rate drops, and your blood pressure follows suit.
Your skin feels clammy. You feel yourself drifting in and out of consciousness. If you don’t get help for an overdose, you may slip into a coma. Breathing may stop altogether, leading to death.
Dealing with an Addiction to Codeine
As with other opiates, it’s possible to develop a codeine addiction. Your body builds up a tolerance to the drug. You then increase the intake, which results in continuous artificial stimulation of the dopamine release. This process reinforces use, which creates a powerful psychological dependency.
Getting treatment is possible in a rehab facility. You’ll get the best results with concurrent psychiatric, medical, and clinical therapy. Examples of modalities include:
- Detox process that might use medical support to help you withdraw from codeine safely and pain-free
- Individual therapy to uncover your reasons for drug abuse and find healthy alternatives for handling stressors
- Process and theme group therapy sessions that encourage personal growth through introspection and peer support
- Dual diagnosis assessment and treatment for individuals with co-occurring mental health disorders
- Transitional living for program participants who need a buffer between residential treatment and independent living
Don’t put yourself at the risk of dying from the effects of codeine abuse. More importantly, get the help you need all at the same location. Doing so cuts down on the relapse potential after detox. Reach out to therapists at the Santé Center for Healing by calling 866.238.3154 today.