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How Do Opioids Change The Brain Permanently

Drug use and abuse change the way that the brain works. Depending on the strength of the substance, the impacts on the brain can last for different periods of time. Opioids are some of the strongest substances that are abused regularly, and they can cause profound changes in the brain.

At the Findlay Recovery Center, we treat drug addiction in a variety of ways, but detox is usually the first step to recovery. Weaning you off of drugs and clearing their influence from your body can help your brain start to recover. But can it recover fully from opioid addiction? How do opioids change the brain and how long do those changes last? We’re going to address those questions here.

How Do Opioids Change The Brain

Opioid use activates receptors in the brain, flooding the brain with pleasurable feelings. This makes our brain crave the same response but, at the same time, it’s building a tolerance to the sensation, which causes us to crave even more and more of the opioid in question. The signals of the opioid receptors, calling out for the same relief, become stronger and stronger, leading to dependency.

As it goes on, opioid use begins to change the prefrontal cortex and medial temporal lobe, often considered to be the pleasure and motivation centers of the brain. However, they also impact a wide range of other parts of our everyday life, including social interactions, memory, emotions, and more.

Brain damage as a result of opioid addiction can lead to poor behavior and mood regulation, memory impairment, worsening reasoning and problem-solving skills, and more. 

The Brain During Detox

At our drug and alcohol addiction residential treatment center in Ohio, detox is usually the first step in addiction treatment. Your brain is likely to be affected by detox and withdrawal as much as your body. As your body experiences sharp drops in serotonin and dopamine, it can lead to a variety of sensations, including a worsening mood, agitation, irritability, problems with focusing, problems getting to sleep, and more. 

Are Those Changes Permanent?

The symptoms that you experience as part of your withdrawal treatment are temporary and will fade with time. But what about the effects on the brain as a result of your opioid use? Opioids are some of the most addictive substances to get addicted to, but cravings will diminish over time. Some of the effects of opioid addiction can indeed be permanent. This is why it’s important to seek treatment as quickly as possible. You can recover what parts of your brain function can be recovered while learning to cope with the differences drug addiction has made to your life.

Getting Started is a Must

Get in touch with the Findlay Recovery Center to start the detox process and begin your recovery from addiction as soon as possible. Our drug addiction residential treatment center in Ohio is equipped with the staff and techniques designed to offer you the very best chance of getting better.

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