Fentanyl is a type of potent synthetic opioid. It is similar to morphine in its makeup but can be up to 100 times more powerful.  It is a prescribed medication that is also manufactured and distributed illegally. It is often used to treat patients who are experiencing extreme pain, particularly after surgery. Furthermore, it is occasionally employed in the treatment of patients suffering from chronic pain who have become physically tolerant to other opioids. Tolerance develops when you require a higher and/or more frequent dose of medicine in order to achieve the intended results. 

Synthetic opioids such as fentanyl, are now the most commonly used drugs in the United States, accounting for over half of all drug overdose deaths. 

What Exactly Are Opioids?

Opioids are a class of medicines that can be found in the opium poppy plant in their natural form. Some opioids are extracted directly from the plant, while others, such as Fentanyl, are synthesized in laboratories by experts utilizing the same chemical composition as the plant. 

What Is The Most Common Way That People Use Fentanyl?

As a prescription medication, Fentanyl is administered as an injection, a patch that is applied to the skin, or as lozenges that are sucked down the throat, similar to cough candies.

The Fentanyl that is illegally used and is most typically related to recent overdoses is manufactured in laboratories. In addition to being marketed illegally as a powder, it is also placed into blotter paper, placed in eye droppers and nasal sprays, and manufactured into tablets that appear like other prescription painkillers.

What Is The Effect Of Fentanyl On The Brain?

Fentanyl, like heroin, morphine, and other opioid medications, operates by attaching itself to the body’s opioid receptors, which are present in parts of the brain that regulate pain and mood, as well as other places of the body.

After repeated use of opioids, the brain becomes accustomed to the medication, decreasing its sensitivity and making it difficult to derive pleasure from anything other than the opioid. Individuals who become addicted to drugs find that their lives are completely taken over by drug seeking and drug use. When addiction has taken hold, an addiction residential treatment center is the best place for someone to be. It can be a loved one or the addict themselves who can take the first step and make contact with a recovery center.

The following are some of the effects of fentanyl:

  • Intense happiness
  • Drowsiness
  • Nausea
  • Bewilderment
  • Constipation
  • Breathing difficulties
  • Unconsciousness

Is It Possible To Overdose On Fentanyl?

Fentanyl can cause an overdose. An overdose happens when a drug causes severe adverse effects and potentially life-threatening complications as a result of its administration. When patients take an overdose of Fentanyl, their breathing might become labored or cease altogether. This can result in a reduction in the amount of oxygen reaching the brain, a condition known as hypoxia. Hypoxia can cause a coma, lasting brain damage, and even death if not treated promptly.

How Can A Fentanyl Overdose Be Treated?

To enhance their earnings, many drug dealers combine the less expensive Fentanyl with other narcotics such as heroin, cocaine, MDMA, and methamphetamine, making it impossible to determine which substance is responsible for an overdose. When administered immediately, naloxone is a medication that can reverse the effects of a fentanyl overdose. It acts by rapidly attaching to opioid receptors and preventing the effects of opioid medications from being felt. However, because fentanyl is more potent than other opioid medicines such as morphine, it may necessitate the administration of several doses of naloxone.

Therefore, if you fear someone has overdosed, the most crucial thing you can do is phone 911 immediately so that they can obtain emergency medical treatment. If medical workers suspect that an opioid substance is involved, they will provide naloxone as soon as they reach the scene. The breathing of people who have received naloxone should be monitored for additional two hours after the final dose has been administered to ensure that breathing does not slow or cease.

Some states have created legislation that allows pharmacists to give naloxone without the need for a prescription from a patient’s doctor. The nasal spray formulations of naloxone, which are available to friends, family, and people in the community, can be used to save someone who has overdosed.

Is It Possible To Become Addicted To Fentanyl?

Because of the strength of fentanyl, it is highly addictive. Someone who follows a doctor’s orders and takes prescription fentanyl regularly may develop a dependence on the opioid, which is marked by withdrawal symptoms when the medicine is withdrawn. 

When people who are addicted to fentanyl quit using it, they might experience severe withdrawal symptoms that can begin as soon as a few hours after the drug was last used. It is advisable that addicts start the withdrawal process once they are under medical supervision in a residential treatment center.

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