Many people do not understand exactly how dangerous codeine is. It is commonly given to patients after dental surgery, tonsillectomies, and as a cough suppressant. Even more concerning is the fact that codeine is often prescribed to children. Too many people do not know that codeine is highly addictive, has a dangerous detox period and contains many dangers to kids and teens that only treatment can help.
Why is Codeine so Addictive?
According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, codeine is converted into morphine by a specific enzyme in the liver, a process that is more rapid in children and people with certain genetic traits that make this enzyme more active.
This makes it very easy to understand how so many people become addicted to codeine, as it is well known that morphine is a very addictive substance. Once addiction has set in, an occurrence that can happen very quickly, treatment is necessary to recover and avoid any more dangers.
Codeine detox is very dangerous for some individuals. There is no medication for codeine detox like there is for other drugs, making a treatment center that understands the risks of codeine addiction very important. The symptoms of codeine detox depend highly on what kind of codeine you are taking. Some of them are:
- aggression and irritability
- diarrhea and abdominal cramps
- intense pain and muscle spasms
- severe vomiting
Although individually these symptoms do not seem severe, when you combine them they become considerably more dangerous. People who become severely ill, or even die, from codeine detox often do so because of untreated complications like dehydration. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, opiates such as codeine require a medically assisted withdrawal. This is why it is important to seek out a treatment center for codeine addiction detox. To find one in your area call 800-774-6145, we can help.
Particular Dangers to Kids and Teens
Codeine itself is an addictive drug. However, the fact that few people know this means that usage of it is often not well controlled, nor its use well supervised by parents. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, teens, and even children, are drinking codeine cough medicine recreationally and becoming addicted to it.
This is the same addiction that they would have if they were taking opioid pills rather than drinking simple prescription cough syrup. Codeine addiction is essentially an opiate addiction, dangerous addiction that requires treatment.
Codeine use can also cause pathways to change in a child’s brain, making them more prone to addiction later in life. Doctor’s do not always consider this when prescribing it to children.
Dangerous Side Effects of Codeine Addiction
Addiction itself is not the only risk of codeine abuse. There are also a number of dangerous side effects that can result from taking high doses of codeine, something which happens frequently in recreational use. Some of these side effects include:
- low heart rate
- poor circulation and low blood pressure
- slowed or stopped breathing
- brain damage
These side effects show just how deadly a codeine addiction can be. If you are addicted to codeine then you need treatment. There are many addiction treatment centers in your area. You can find one that can help you with your codeine addiction by calling 800-774-6145.