Last updated: 04/23/2018
Author: Addictions.com Medical Review
Reading Time: 4 minutes
Morphine is a type of medication called opiate (narcotic) analgesics. Morphine works by changing the way the brain and nervous system react to pain. One of the brand names for morphine oral is Roxanol. Roxanol is a prescription medication used to treat severe pain and other more intense conditions. It can easily cause tolerance, physical and psychological dependence, and addiction whether taken as prescribed or abused.
If you or a loved one is having trouble stopping Roxanol use, has an increased tolerance for the medication, or is experiencing psychological dependence, seek treatment immediately so that you can prevent further consequences from happening.
Roxanol Addiction vs. Dependence
In many cases, users of Roxanol develop a dependence on the drug after taking it for an extended period of time. This means they will experience withdrawal symptoms if they are unable to take the drug (such as a runny nose, muscle pains, diarrhea, and vomiting). Many people often confuse dependence with addiction, as the two issues can develop simultaneously but will not always develop together. A person will only become addicted to Roxanol if they abuse the drug which is why the difference between these two conditions must be clear.
Addiction is the compulsive abuse of a drug that is harmful to the individual who abuses it; dependence is a state that can occur whether the drug is abused or not and causes the individual to feel abnormal when unable to take the drug. Different parts of the brain are actually involved in the development of morphine addiction (reward pathway) and morphine dependence (thalamus and brainstem).
Addiction is caused by long-term abuse of a drug that becomes compulsive over time. Roxanol has the potential to cause this condition, as the euphoric effects it causes when abused can cause the individual to crave its use. Soon, the individual will abuse the drug no matter what the consequences, likely experiencing both dependence and addiction.
Roxanol Abuse Signs and Symptoms
A person who is addicted to Roxanol will show very clear signs of their consistent drug abuse. Constant confusion, coordination problems, drowsiness, euphoria, and constipation are all symptoms that are caused by Roxanol abuse, and individuals who are addicted to the drug will show signs of these issues every day.
Other signs that are more specific to addiction are:
- A disinterest in activities that used to matter to the individual
- A dissatisfaction with life in general
- Mood swings
- Hostility toward those who attempt to comment on the person’s dangerous drug use
- A change in those with whom the individual spends their time, specifically because they will only want to be with others who abuse drugs
- A likeliness for getting involved in dangerous behaviors, especially risky sexual behaviors, sharing needles, and seeking out more morphine, even to their own detriment
- A tendency not to care about physical appearance and neglecting to eat
- A tendency to make excuses in order to abuse more Roxanol
When someone you know is constantly saying things like
- “I need drugs to have fun.”
- “I don’t feel like myself unless I’m high.”
- “I had a really stressful day; that’s why I need to take it.”
they are likely already addicted to Roxanol. No matter what the situation, the individual will find a reason to abuse the drug.
Effects of Roxanol Addiction
Roxanol addiction can cause many problems related to the individual’s psychological and physical health as well as those which affect the addict’s whole life. For example, those who abuse morphine often do so by injecting the drug as this behavior is common among heroin users. Because many drug addicted individuals share needles, the risk of HIV, hepatitis, and other infectious diseases is high among Roxanol addicts.
Other dangerous effects of Roxanol addiction include:
- Overdose caused by abusing high doses of the drug
- This can lead to respiratory depression where the individual begins to breathe shallowly or not at all. Cardiac arrest and death may occur with a serious morphine overdose.
- Heroin abuse
- This can be extremely dangerous as heroin can cause many more dangerous health effects and is a very potent, illegal opioid.
- Losing one’s job, getting suspended or seeing one’s grades drop in school, or losing all one’s money to Roxanol
- Depression and suicidal thoughts
- Relationship problems and falling out with family members and friends
- Inability to control drug abuse
- Anxiety and other mood disturbances
The individual will be unable to stop taking Roxanol even though they may understand that the drug is harming them. This issue calls for addiction treatment which will allow the addict to take back control of their life from the powerful drug.
Roxanol Addiction Treatment
Treating Roxanol addicts is not easy. Even recognizing and acknowledging the need is difficult, because addicts conceal, rationalize, and minimize, while friends and family may fear to be intrusive or having to assume responsibility. Formal treatment is the only way to truly fight Roxanol addiction, especially because the drug itself is so potent and its abuse is likely to lead to more problematic behavior if left untreated.
Medications like methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone can be used to treat opioid addiction, and based on the patient’s needs, one type of medication may be more beneficial than another. Patients can also be switched from one treatment to another based on how they are affected and if their needs change over time. A comprehensive treatment regimen for Roxanol addiction will often include both medication and behavioral treatments like cognitive-behavioral therapy or contingency management. Many patients also benefit greatly from group therapy or attending a support group like Narcotics Anonymous.
Roxanol is not only potent but dangerous when misused, and anyone who abuses the drug for a long period of time has the potential of becoming addicted. In most cases, morphine addiction cannot be broken merely through force of will, and a thorough treatment program in addition to a loving support system of family and friends will often give an individual the best chance of recovery from Roxanol addiction.