A recent study conducted by various departments at the University of Siena, Italy and Temple University in Philadelphia found that opioids, such as morphine, can cause a reduction in testosterone, estrogen and other sex hormones. This reduction in hormone levels can have an impact on other organs of the body, such as the brain, liver and testis. People who use morphine to control pain often become addicted to the drug and need more of it to provide the same level of relief. Using morphine in this way can not only impact a person’s ability to function normally on a daily basis, but also reduce sexual function and damage other vital organs of the body.
If your loved one uses morphine to control pain and you think he or she may be addicted, look for the following symptoms:
Because morphine reduces the circulating levels of hormones in the body, it can cause low energy levels in both men and women. Morphine and other opioids can also result in decreased levels of cortisol, the hormone that controls stress levels in the body. When hormones fluctuate, users may feel like they need more of the drug to deal with hormonal side effects. This can lead to using more morphine to get relief from symptoms or to feel normal. Individuals who are addicted to morphine can become involved in a cycle of drug abuse that causes symptoms rather than relieves them.
When hormonal imbalances occur due to an addiction, the treatment for the addiction must be tailored to meet those needs. After a period of medically-supervised detox, the recovering morphine addict will go through a time of diagnosis. Doctors and therapists will determine what medications might be needed to bring hormone levels back to normal in order to increase the chances of rehab success. Along with taking medications, the person in recovery will be involved in counseling and individual and group therapy to learn to live life without the drug. Through the right diagnosis and treatment plan, an individual who is addicted to morphine can have a life free from drug addiction.
Morphine can be a helpful tool in the management of pain, but too much of the drug over long periods of time can cause changes in hormone levels, making addiction treatment more challenging. If you or a loved one struggles with morphine addiction, we are here to help you. Call our toll-free, 24 hour number to speak with a helpline counselor. We are ready to help you find an appropriate treatment program for your unique situation.