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Long Term Effects of Opioids on the Body

What Drugs Are Considered Opioids?

The ongoing opioid epidemic has become widely talked about by news providers and health officials. The potential threats and harm from opioid addiction can have devastating effects on individuals living with active opioid addiction. If you are concerned about your loved one’s use of substances or want to be cautious about your personal substance abuse, understand the substances you are taking to mitigate the risks associated with opioid addiction. 

Opioids are a class of drugs that contain the opium poppy plant that works within the brain to produce several effects, including pain relief or euphoria. Opioids can be classified as prescription opioids or can be certain street drugs. The following drugs are considered opioids:

  • Heroin
  • Fentanyl 
  • Oxycodone 
  • Morphine 
  • Vicodin 
  • Codeine 
  • Hydrocodone 
  • Methadone 
  • Tramadol 
  • Meperidine 

To contact The Detox Center of Los Angeles to learn how to access our addiction treatment programs, call (888) 346-4350 today.

How Long-Term Opioid Use Affects The Body

Opioid abuse has been proven to cause long-term adverse effects on an individual’s overall health system and physical and emotional wellbeing. The longer someone engages in opioid abuse and develops a physical dependence, the higher chances of an increase in damage to a person’s mental and physical health. Long-term opioid use has been known to cause significant damage to an individual’s vital organs and physical functioning abilities. This creates a challenge in having a quality of life that is meaningful and focuses on healthy living.

Common long-term effects of opioid use are:

  • Significant decline in respiratory system functioning, causing respiratory depression 
  • A weakened immune system 
  • Liver damage 
  • Emotional instability or increase in mental illness concerns 
  • Insomnia
  • Inability to concentrate 
  • Hepatitis C 
  • Severe constipation 
  • Infectious endocarditis 
  • Hypoxia (causes a lack of oxygen to vital organs leading to long-term effects including coma, permanent brain damage, or death) 

Signs of Opioid Addiction

When you are concerned about a loved one’s potential opioid abuse, you want to know the signs and symptoms of opioid abuse to provide them with the necessary opioid therapy options to safely overcome their opioid abuse. 

Typical signs and symptoms of opioid abuse to be aware of are:

  • Weight loss or weight gain 
  • Dry mouth 
  • Diarrhea 
  • Cramping 
  • Headaches 
  • Nausea or vomiting 
  • Isolation from friends and family 
  • Extreme mood swings or behavioral changes
  • Loss of interest in activities or hobbies that you once enjoyed 
  • Engaging in high-risk behaviors including stealing from others or using in dangerous situations 
  • Slowed or slurred speech 
  • Confusion or disorientation 
  • Loss of concentration 
  • Distorted perception of reality 
  • Joint and muscle pain 

Get Help for Opioid Addiction at The Detox Center of Los Angeles

When you are ready to address your opioid abuse and heal from your addiction, The Detox Center of Los Angeles offers a comprehensive approach to addiction treatment that will help you safely remove the physical dependence of opioid abuse through our medical detox program. Once you have overcome your physical dependence, you will be invited to participate in our inpatient or outpatient drug rehab programs. These will help you understand the root causes of your addiction. Our patients are invited to participate in the following addiction treatment methods:

  • Behavioral therapy 
  • Dual diagnosis treatment, to support you in addressing any mental health concerns and physical ailments causing chronic pain or acute pain
  • Medication-assisted treatment 
  • Holistic therapy 
  • Family therapy 
  • Life skills and relapse prevention tools 
  • Nutritional therapy to support healthy living 
  • 12-step addiction treatment methods 

The Detox Center of Los Angeles provides a whole-person integrated approach to addiction treatment that focuses on personalized care for all patients. Our team is dedicated to supporting you to find your way in sobriety by healing from the past to build a healthy future in sober living. Contact us today at (888) 346-4350 to hear more about our treatment methods exclusive to our recovery center. We hope to help you successfully overcome your opioid misuse and gain the life of sobriety you have wanted. 


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Will my insurance cover treatment for addiction?

The Detox Center of L.A. accepts most major insurance providers and private healthcare policies. We offer free insurance verification as well as eligibility and benefits for both behavioral and mental health treatment services. Please fill out our insurance verification form here to verify your insurance.

What happens in addiction

Effective addiction treatment programs are tailored to each individual. Because of this, it will be a different experience for everyone. However, it generally involves a combination of detoxification, group and individual therapy, educational presentations, and aftercare planning in order to ensure long-term recovery. Upon arrival at The Detox Center of L.A., you can expect our professionally trained staff to create an individualized treatment plan based on your needs and treatment goals.