Dilaudid is a narcotic pain reliever available by prescription. This drug contains hydromorphone hydrochloride, a potent opioid that can be incredibly effective but comes with some risks. It is intended to treat moderate to severe pain. It's pain relieving effects stem from the way Dilaudid attaches to opiate receptors in the brain and nervous system.

Dilaudid has a high potential to lead to abuse and dependency. For this reason, Dilaudid should only be used by those who have a legitimate prescription. With all opiates, there is also the risk for serious respiratory depression. This is because Dilaudid is a central nervous system depressant and can adversely affect breathing in some circumstances.

Dilaudid should not be taken:

  • In conjunction with alcohol
  • With other substances that have CNS depressant effects
  • By anyone with a history of drug abuse or addiction
  • In larger amounts than what is prescribed
  • For a longer period of time than recommended
  • By anyone who is allergic to narcotic medications

Dilaudid Should Be Taken With Caution To Avoid Certain Risks

This medication can cause patients to feel drowsy. For this reason, they should not operate heavy machinery, drive a car or engage in other potentially dangerous activities until they know how it affects them.

As previously mentioned, Dilaudid can depress the central nervous system. Taking it with other substances that have this effect can be extremely dangerous, possibly leading to accidental death. These substances include: other opiates, alcohol, sedatives, hypnotics and muscle relaxers.

Follow prescription guidelines on use closely. They are meant to keep you safe. Every prescription is accompanied by a labeling insert that includes information on safe use, warnings, precautions and possible opiate side effects.

How To Stay Safe When Taking Dilaudid And Other Prescription Narcotics

Millions of people have taken opiates throughout the years, without incident. They have been used historically and prized for their ability to provide comfort in a trying time. For some people, however, the use of Dilaudid and other opiates can be problematic.

One of the risks worth noting is allergic reaction to opiates. A severe allergic reaction can be fatal, so anytime these symptoms present, it's important to call emergency medical services:

  • Swelling of the lips, face, tongue or throat
  • Inability to breathe
  • Rash
  • Hives
  • Itching
  • Tightness in the chest

Use of Dilaudid can become habitual, especially if it's used for a long period of time or in high dosages. Recreational use of opiates is a bad idea because of these serious risks. Opiate abuse is an unfortunate reality that has become epidemic in the last few years. Abusing Dilaudid can lead to addiction, overdose or death.

Dilaudid Dependence Can Be Strictly Physical, Or It Can Progress To Addiction

Physical dependence is possible if you take Dilaudid for a prolonged period. The body will become used to it and physical opiate withdrawal symptoms will manifest if you try to stop taking it.

Dilaudid addiction is when a person has become both physically and psychologically dependent upon the drug. This is obviously a much more serious problem, but it's important to note that physical dependence can progress to this if there is misuse of any kind.

Dilaudid Addiction Is Difficult To Beat Without Help

If you are compulsive with your use of Dilaudid, it is likely an indication of addiction. Preoccupation with getting or taking Dilaudid is another sign. Other things to look for if you suspect addiction:

  • Deteriorating health
  • Evidence of "doctor shopping" or other means of diversion
  • Agitation or sickness if a person runs out of Dilaudid
  • Lack of motivation and changes in mood

Side Effects Of Dilaudid

All prescription drugs carry the risk for side effects. Some people experience them; some do not. For many people, mild symptoms develop when use starts but fade once the body gets used to it.

Dilaudid side effects can include:

  • Constipation
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Itching
  • Flushing
  • Headaches
  • Difficult breathing
  • Abdominal cramping
  • Dizziness
  • Lightheadedness
  • Mood swings
  • Heartburn
  • Excitability
  • Increased sweating
  • Nervousness
  • Insomnia

More serious side effects should be reported to a doctor immediately. They include: confusion, irregular heartbeat, problems with urination, hallucinations, mood changes, severe dizziness, severe drowsiness or headaches and blurred vision.

Dilaudid Abuse Can Have Deadly Consequences

Some people misuse their prescription medication on accident, while others may do so because a tolerance has developed and pain control is compromised. There are others, however, that abuse opiates for the "high" they can cause. All of these scenarios are dangerous.

Abuse of Dilaudid and other opiates has reached epidemic proportions in this country. Evidence of this can include:

  • Taking Dilaudid in a higher dosage than recommended
  • Taking it for longer than prescribed
  • Taking it in combination with other substances to heighten the effects or achieve a "high"
  • "Doctor shopping," or going from doctor to doctor to get more medication
  • Prescription fraud or forgery
  • Resulting to risky practices to get Dilaudid
  • Altering the dosage in a way that causes rapid absorption (chewing, snorting, injecting)

Dilaudid Misuse Is On The Rise

The typical profile of a drug abuser is not what it used to be. People from all walks of life are falling victim to the grasp that opiates can have over you. For so many people, this problem starts innocently enough. An accident or injury can leave anyone with the need to take opiate pain medication.

Regular, prolonged use or misuse can lead quickly to dependency. Further progression to addiction can also happen fast. Many people delay getting help for this problem because they fear opiate withdrawal. Don't lose hope - there are effective and safe opiate treatment programs that can help you achieve long-term abstinence.

Withdrawing From Dilaudid Can Be Difficult Without Help

Possible symptoms of opiate withdrawal include:

  • Extreme cravings
  • Severe anxiety, agitation
  • Wild mood swings
  • Restlessness, problems sleeping
  • Muscle and bone pain/twitching
  • Nausea, vomiting and/or diarrhea
  • Sweating
  • Loss of appetite
  • Headaches
  • Abdominal cramps
  • Yawning
  • Runny nose
  • Sneezing
  • Goose bumps

The symptoms of Dilaudid withdrawal can be physical and psychological. It may seem impossible to quit taking it, but the right opiate treatment program can assist with this in a safe, confidential and humane manner.

Dilaudid withdrawal can be dangerous, even deadly. What the body goes through is so stressful, that many people who don't get professional help return to use quickly. It's not recommended that patients try to stop use on their own after dependency has developed.

Self detox from opiates is rarely successful. Professional treatment in the form of Dilaudid detox may be required in order to stay safe and have the best chance at full recovery.

An Overdose Can Happen If Dilaudid Is Not Used According To Directions

Emergency help should be sought immediately if you experience any of these symptoms: problem breathing, slow heart rate, cool or clammy skin, extreme dizziness and drowsiness, weakness, confusion, seizures, pinpoint pupils, convulsions and low blood pressure.

It's important to get treatment as early as possible because a Dilaudid overdose of this type can be deadly. An overdose can happen in any of the following situations:

  • If you were to take too much Dilaudid
  • If you mix Dilaudid with other substances to heighten effects
  • If you are dependent and quit taking Dilaudid for any length of time and resume use after your tolerance drops

What To Do If You Find Yourself Dependent Upon Dilaudid

First and foremost, don't give up. Some people aren't successful the first time they try to detox from opiate addiction. The likelihood of being successful increases if professional help is sought. There are plenty of options available to help you toward your goal of being opiate free.

You will want to weigh your options before you decide on inpatient or outpatient opiate treatment. Decisions should be based on your own unique goals, concerns, finances and family and work obligations. Professionals who have a background in medicine and drug addiction can help to keep you safe during the transition to wellness.

Inpatient Dilaudid treatment tends to offer a more thorough approach to detox. Many inpatient programs focus on managing withdrawal and offering intensive counseling to address the psychological damage caused by addiction.

Outpatient options include opiate replacement therapy with the drugs methadone, Suboxone or Subutex. These drugs are opiates too and are meant to help patients stop taking drugs deemed more dangerous. The downside is that these replacement medications are also subject to abuse and dependence.

Rapid detox for opiates is another option that can have very impressive results. Companies that do it right put their emphasis on safety, comfort, dignity and privacy. This is the kind of treatment that should be offered in an accredited hospital where patients can be monitored closely.

This detox method involves the use of intravenous medications meant to eradicate the dependency, sometimes in less than two hours. This occurs while patients are deeply sedated and not consciously aware that the withdrawal process is passing over them. They should then be monitored closely while they recover in the hospital, to minimize the possibility for complications. Some type of aftercare, coupled with rapid detox, tends to give patients the best results.

Long-term recovery from opiates is more than possible if you make the decision to seek professional detox.