Codeine Dependence

  • Generic Name or Active Ingridient: Codeine

There is no need to further your suffering by feeling guilty over codeine dependence. For many, this is a routine part of taking the narcotic medication. If taken for a prolonged period, any opiate can lead to physical dependency. This simply means that your body has become used to having the drug and will develop symptoms of opiate withdrawal if use is stopped.

There are some useful and effective actions that can be taken to remedy this problem, but it's best to first talk with your doctor. If you have become physically dependent while taking codeine, your doctor may wish to advise you on options. This can include taking a smaller dosage, switching medications or gradually tapering your use.

What Is Codeine And What Are The Drawbacks?

Codeine is an opiate that is available legally only by prescription. This medication can also be found on the black market and is often sold to people who plan to abuse the medication. Codeine, which can also be used for cough suppression, can elicit feelings of sedation and euphoria if misused. Most people with a legitimate codeine prescription do not use it for these reasons.

There is no shame in developing a physical dependency with continual codeine use. The best bet is to get help with this problem if you are worried it could progress. Physical codeine dependency combined with psychological dependency constitutes addiction. This is a much more serious issue and requires swift and professional help to eliminate the problem. This can mean detox and/or rehab.

Codeine Use Can Become Habitual, Leading To Dependence

Just because some opiates are legal and available by prescription from a physician DOES NOT mean that it is any less potent or dangerous than "street" drugs such as heroin. Codeine is a milder opiate when compared to Vicodin, Percocet and OxyContin. It still has the same potential to lead to habitual use. Dependence and addiction can result from repeated use of codeine, or any use that is unintended. Combining codeine with other substances that depress the central nervous system (alcohol, sedatives, other opiates) can be disastrous, even leading to death. If you feel your dependence or use has progressed, you owe it to yourself to look into opiate treatment options.

You are not alone in this problem. People all over the world have accidentally fallen victim to opiate dependency. You deserve to find a codeine treatment program that treats you as an individual, with respect and compassion.

Codeine Dependency Symptoms

Sometimes, taking codeine or other opiate medications presents risks that include dependency. For many, this dependency affects them physically and can be a by-product of regular use that is legitimate. Other times, dependency can develop with opiate abuse and can affect people physically and psychologically.

Taking codeine is a safe and routine experience for most folks. It is used for pain management, cough suppression and sometimes, as an anti-diarrheal, but codeine is not meant for long-term treatment. This narcotic prescription medication is less potent and has less abuse potential than other drugs in the opiate class. But it has the same ability to lead to habitual behavior, dependence and codeine addiction.

It's important to understand that misuse of codeine goes hand-in-hand with dependency. It can stem from misuse, causing patients to want and need more and more. Or, opiate dependency can fuel abuse as tolerance causes patients to need increasingly higher dosages to experience the same effect.

What Distinguishes Physical Opiate Dependence From Psychological Dependence?

Physical codeine dependency usually develops with regular use over a period of time. It will present itself with the symptoms of physical withdrawal if a person tries to stop taking codeine. These can include severe flu-like symptoms, runny nose, muscle and bone pain and tremors. If a person is physically and psychologically dependent upon codeine, he or she is said to be addicted. This is a much more dangerous scenario and can include severe cravings and serious agitation.

Both types of codeine dependency can be reversed with the help of professionals. It's important to get a hold of the problem as early as possible. The progression of dependence can be swift and puts patients at risk for further problems, including codeine overdose. Codeine detox and codeine rehab programs can help to address both the physical and psychological components of dependency.

Symptoms Of Codeine Dependency

  • Being preoccupied with obtaining and consuming codeine
  • Taking too much codeine at once or taking it more often than recommended
  • Mixing codeine with other substances to heighten the effects
  • Running out of codeine before you should
  • Trying to obtain codeine in an illicit manner or from shady sources
  • Becoming sick when you stop taking or run out of codeine

Don't get caught up in the cycle of codeine use that is fueled by the fear of opiate withdrawal. The prospect of this often keeps people using codeine. Many codeine treatment programs are able to make you comfortable during withdrawal. Minimizing the suffering of withdrawal can help patients achieve long-term recovery.

There should be no shame in seeking treatment for prescription painkiller dependence. The right treatment program will treat individuals as such and will avoid using shame and blame to force recovery. This tactic rarely works and more often than not, backfires. You deserve to be treated with dignity and respect. Your recovery depends on it.