Morphine, an opiate painkiller often prescribed for the management of moderate to severe pain, has a high potential for abuse and addiction 1,2. Addiction is a chronic condition characterized by an inability to control morphine use despite negative consequences. Left untreated, an addiction to morphine can result in significant physical, psychological, social, and financial impairment and seriously impact your overall ability to function in daily life.
- Treatment for morphine addiction.
- Cost of morphine addiction treatment.
- Paying for treatment.
- Signs and symptoms of morphine addiction.
- Causes of morphine addiction.
- Long-term effects of morphine addiction.
- Find a treatment program.
Treatment for Morphine Addiction
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When taken as prescribed, morphine is a safe and effective painkiller, but when people misuse or abuse the opiate, it can have repercussions. People who misuse or abuse morphine may take more than prescribed, take it more often than prescribed, crush and snort the tablet form of the drug, or dissolve it in water and inject it directly into their bloodstream. Chronic morphine abuse can lead to the development of addiction, which can have pervasive, debilitating effects on a user’s life.
Luckily morphine addiction is a treatable condition. Although some people may quit using on their own, it can be beneficial to obtain professional treatment. Some benefits of substance abuse treatment may include:
- Medical detox: Withdrawal can be difficult to manage on your own and may contribute to relapse. A supervised detox can help to medically manage withdrawal symptoms and alleviate cravings.
- Professional support and monitoring: Recovery center staff are qualified and trained in the treatment of substance abuse disorders. They understand the challenges of quitting drug abuse and are there to help in any way possible.
- Structure: People in recovery benefit from the day-to-day schedule of a treatment program. Structure can provide you with security and help prevent relapse due to boredom.
- Expert psychological care: Receiving therapy and counseling from a team of substance abuse and mental health professionals can help you uncover and address underlying issues or co-occurring mental health disorders.
There are a number of beneficial recovery options offered through various available treatment programs, so make sure to do your research when searching for addiction treatment. The right treatment program for you is one that addresses your individual needs and fits your beliefs.
Behavioral treatment can help a person obtain and maintain sobriety in the long-term by rectifying maladaptive behaviors and teaching them new coping skills.
Some of the types of treatment you might choose from include:
- Detox: This is a short-term form of treatment that helps with the initial phase of recovery and facilitates the safe, comfortable clearing of morphine from your system.
- Inpatient: You live at the recovery center, typically for up to 90 days, and receive 24/7 care and support.
- Outpatient: You live at home, but attend treatment at an outpatient facility one to several times per week.
- Luxury: You participate in substance abuse treatment, but also have access to high-end, luxurious amenities, such as gourmet meals, massages, and spa treatments.
- Executive: If you are someone in a highly visible career, such as a CEO, you may appreciate the discreet, yet top-notch, care and amenities offered by these facilities. You can continue working while recovering from a morphine addiction.
- 12-step programs: You work through the 12 steps of recovery with the assistance of a sponsor and the encouragement of the group. People attend 12-step programs as a way of receiving support and fellowship from others who have suffered from addiction.
- Holistic: If you prefer a natural focus for healing the mind, body, and spirit, you may choose a treatment center that utilizes a holistic approach to substance abuse recovery. You might participate in daily yoga classes, eat organic meals, and learn meditation while still participating in counseling and other forms of more traditional treatment.
- Population-specific: Some treatment facilities specialize in addressing the unique needs of certain populations, such as teens, LGBT people, veterans, women-only, and men-only.
Addiction to morphine is usually best addressed through a biopsychosocial approach, meaning that treatment should focus on the physical, psychological, and social components of addiction. Behavioral treatment can help a person obtain and maintain sobriety in the long-term by rectifying maladaptive behaviors and teaching them new coping skills 3.
Medication may be used in combination with behavioral therapy to treat morphine addiction. Some of the medications that may be beneficial to your recovery include 3:
- Naltrexone: This drug blocks the effects of opioids in the brain and prevents you from getting high.
- Methadone: It can be helpful for alleviating withdrawal symptoms and eliminating drug cravings.
- Buprenorphine: Another drug that can assist with reducing withdrawal symptoms, it is often combined with naloxone in an abuse-deterring formulation known as Suboxone 4.
Cost of Morphine Addiction Treatment
Every treatment program sets its own price—there is no standard fee for treatment. The costs largely depend upon your insurance policy, the type of treatment you choose, the location, the amenities, and length of the program.
Paying for Treatment
If you don’t have insurance, don’t be put off by the potential costs of treatment. Even if it seems daunting, there are always ways you can finance your recovery. Remember, your recovery is the most important concern. Choosing to complete a treatment program is one of the best decisions you can make for your sobriety, happiness, and health.
In a perfect world, you’d be able to pay for all of the costs directly out of pocket without an impact on your wallet. But the reality is that this is not often possible for most people.
Sometimes, using a bit of creativity and relying on the generosity of others can help you bridge any financial gaps. A few of the options you might consider to help pay for treatment include:
- Personal savings: One of the best uses for your hard-earned savings is becoming clean, sober, and taking back control of your life.
- Sliding scale: Some recovery centers offer sliding scale—or reduced fees—based on your income and ability to pay.
- Payment plan: Similarly, some recovery centers may offer you the chance to pay off your treatment costs in monthly installments.
- Credit cards: Using a credit card to pay even a part of the cost can help make treatment a bit easier. Think of your credit card as a payment plan in which you pay down the minimum each month.
- Ask friends or family: Your loved ones may be willing to lend a helping hand when it comes to financing your recovery.
- Start a crowdfunding campaign: You can start a campaign on GoFundMe or IndieGoGo to raise money from friends, family members, and strangers alike.
Signs and Symptoms of Morphine Addiction
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Morphine addiction, which is classified as opioid use disorder, manifests in a wide range of physical, psychological, and behavioral symptoms. 5,9.
Some of the behavioral signs and symptoms of morphine addiction include 9:
- Using morphine despite awareness of negative consequences.
- Stealing, lying, or engaging in other illegal or secretive behaviors in an attempt to obtain more morphine.
- Spending a lot of time trying to get and use morphine.
- Using morphine in hazardous situations, such as while driving.
- Displaying defensiveness when confronted by others about potential use.
- Failing to cut down or cease usage.
- Abandoning previously enjoyed activities in favor of morphine use.
Physical and psychological signs and symptoms of morphine addiction and abuse may include 6,9:
- Withdrawal symptoms, including sweating, vomiting,
- Impaired attention or memory.
- Needle marks on extremities (if morphine is injected).
- A lack of coordination.
- Slurred speech.
- Shallow breathing.
- Pinpoint pupils.
- Confusion or delirium.
Addiction is a progressive, chronic condition, which means that tends to worsen over time. If left untreated, addiction can lead to physical and psychological impairments or sometimes even death.
Long-term morphine abuse can have debilitating effects, such as 1,8,9:
- Tolerance: Chronic morphine use can lead to tolerance, which means that you will require increasing doses to achieve the same effects.
- Physical dependence: Your body adapts to the presence of morphine and requires it to avoid withdrawal symptoms, such as muscle and bone pain, excessive sweating, anxiety, nausea, vomiting, and goose bumps.
- Severe constipation.
- An increased risk of infections, such as HIV, hepatitis, and infection of the heart lining, due to intravenous use.
- Difficulties in sexual functioning, such as erectile dysfunction for males.
- Irregular menses in women.
- Brain damage and/or coma due to hypoxia, a depletion in oxygen resulting from respiratory depression.
In general, addiction can significantly interfere with your life, resulting in consequences such as:
- Poor performance at work or school.
- Job loss.
- Debt or other financial difficulties.
- Divorce or loss of important relationships.
- Child neglect or abuse.
- Legal issues.
Find a Treatment Program
Without proper treatment, it can be very difficult to kick an addiction. Don’t put off your recovery any longer—call our helpline today at 1-888-439-3435 Who Answers? to speak to an addiction support specialist about treatment options.
- U.S. National Library of Medicine. (2016). Opiate and opioid withdrawal.
- Mayo Clinic. (2016). Morphine.
- National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2014). Treating prescription drug addiction.
- National Institute on Drug Abuse. Buprenorphine.
- American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Opioid Use Disorder: Diagnostic Criteria.
- U.S. National Library of Medicine. (2015). Opioid intoxication.
- American Society of Addiction Medicine. (2011). Definition of Addiction.
- National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2014). What are the possible consequences of opioid use and abuse?
- American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (5th ed.). Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Association.