Morphine is a potent pain reliever which was discovered in 1804 and first distributed in 1817.
It was originally marketed as both an analgesic and as a treatment for opium and alcohol addiction. Eventually, however, morphine was found to be more addictive than either of those substances. Morphine is currently marketed under dozens of brand names, including MS Contin, MSIR, Avinza, Kadian, Oramorph, Roxanol, and Kapanol.
Like other opioid medications, morphine has a high potential to cause tolerance, dependence, and addiction. Physical addiction may take several months to develop, but tolerance and psychological dependence develop rapidly, often within weeks of beginning use. In 1914 morphine became a controlled substance in the United States. Although all opioid drugs have high addiction potential, studies suggest that morphine and heroin are the drugs in the class at particularly high risk for causing dependence and addiction.
When morphine users develop a dependence or addiction, they must take the drug to feel normal, and to avoid withdrawal symptoms. Withdrawal symptoms include drug cravings, depression, irritability, nausea and vomiting, aches and pains, insomnia and restless sleep, sweating, chills, yawning, and increases in temperature, blood pressure, and heart rate. Symptoms generally appear between 6 and 12 hours after the last dose of morphine was taken.
The best treatment services for morphine abuse are those that match the patient’s particular needs and goals. A thorough assessment is the first step in that process. A proper assessment will identify the degree of morphine dependence or addiction and also identify all co-occurring physical and mental conditions which should be treated concurrently.
Quality treatment will involve counseling and skills training. Often cognitive-behavioral approaches are used. These approaches involve the following:
Treatment for morphine addiction may also involve the use of medications, such as methadone, buprenorphine, or Naltrexone. Methadone and buprenorphine can help reduce cravings and withdrawal symptoms. Naltrexone blocks the effect of opioid drugs and can be helpful in relapse prevention.
If you or a loved one need help breaking free from the grip of morphine, we can help. Our toll-free number is staffed 24 hours a day with people ready to answer your questions and help you reclaim your life. Don’t put it off any longer. Call today.