Discussing the cause and effects of morphine abuse and addiction can often wind up sounding like the classic “chicken and egg” conundrum. Many people, in their search for understanding, spend excessive energy contemplating why they have a drug problem instead of focusing on overcoming it. The fact is though, that a severe emotional illness such as depression can significantly increase the likelihood that a person will become addicted to a drug like morphine. While depression is certainly not the root of morphine abuse for every addict, it is for some.
Morphine, and other opiates such as heroin and OxyContin, directly impact the same part of the brain that is most affected by depression. This part of the prefrontal cortex is where pleasure is felt and used to drive the following functions:
Depression mutes all of these functions (and more), leaving a person emotionally numb and hopeless. Morphine, however, provides emotional relief even as it blocks physical pain signals. The result is a euphoric high that the brain recognizes and craves constantly. Other psychological conditions such as personality, anxiety or bipolar disorders create similar propensities for developing an addiction to opiates, alcohol or other drugs.
When a person struggles with both depression and morphine addiction he has what is called a Dual Diagnosis and requires a special type of treatment. The most effective way to address co-occurring disorders is by enlisting the services of a treatment program that is specially designed to confront all aspects of a patient’s physical and emotional health in an integrated and holistic way. This often involves a combination of medical care, counseling and education. While there are some outpatient versions of this kind of treatment, the most successful programs are usually residential centers where the patient can invest all of his or her energy and attention on the healing process without the distractions of daily life.
If you are struggling with depression and morphine abuse, or if you are concerned about the drug use of a friend or loved one, please call our toll-free helpline today. Our staff members are standing by all day and night with the following free, confidential services:
There are no strings attached and you have nothing to lose. We’re here to help you unravel this complicated and painful disease. Call now.