What are narcotics? What are opioids? Are they the same thing?
You’re not alone if you don’t know the difference between narcotics vs opioids. Everyone from reporters to health officials aren’t entirely sure what one is or the other.
However, there is one thing that experts do know is that they’re both harmful. These dangerous drugs have taken thousands of American lives each year. And if you feel that someone you know could be abusing prescription drugs, it’s best to check facts as early as now, so you’re prepared for the future.
Below, we’ll dive into the answer to narcotics vs opioids.
Both drugs are used to relieve pain. However, there are some differences between them.
Narcotics are a broad classification of drugs that include anything that can induce sleep or numb the senses. Opioids are a specific type of narcotic that specifically interact with the body’s opioid receptors.
Both narcotics and opioids can be used for legitimate medical purposes, but they are also both highly addictive and can be abused.
They differ in their chemical structure.
Narcotics are typically natural substances that are derived from the opium poppy. Opioids can be either natural or synthetic.
How They Affect the Brain
Both bind to receptors in the brain that are involved in pain perception and the reward system. This binding alters the way the brain perceives pain and can lead to feelings of euphoria.
These drugs also suppress the respiratory system, which can lead to respiratory depression and death.
Narcotics and opioids are central nervous system depressants that can produce a range of effects, from relief of pain and anxiety to sedation and respiratory depression.
Narcotics are typically used for long-term relief of pain (3-4 months), while opioids are used for short-term (no more than 3 days) relief of pain.
Dangers and Side Effects
The dangers and side effects of these drugs vary depending on the specific drug. However, common side effects include drowsiness, constipation, slowed breathing, and impaired judgment. Narcotics and opioids can also interact with other medications, which can make them more dangerous.
The risk of addiction is high in narcotics but low in opioids. However, there is a higher risk of overdose with opioids.
So if there is a risk of contamination with your medication, it’s important to know. Research narcotic detection dogs and see if they might be the help you need to keep you safe from the danger of these drugs.
Narcotics vs Opioids: Knowing When and When Not to Take Them
If you are taking narcotics or opioids, be sure to follow your doctor’s instructions carefully. Do not take more than the prescribed amount, and do not share your medication with others.
Knowing the difference between narcotics vs opioids is helpful but knowing when to take them and when not to is more important. It’s all about being in control of yourself.
If you’ve found this article helpful, please check out some of the other posts on our website. Our blog is packed with useful content for all of your daily interests.