Addiction Solution Source

What are Narcotics?

May 4th, 2007 · No Comments

Narcotic drugs (also called opioids) are derivatives of the opium poppy (Papaver somniferum) or chemically similar synthetics. The poppy was grown in the Mediterranean region as early as 3000 B.C., and has since been cultivated in a number of countries throughout the world.

Narcotics are used therapeutically to treat pain, suppress cough, alleviate diarrhea, and induce anesthesia. Narcotics are administered in a variety of ways. Some are taken orally, transdermally (skin patches), or injected. They are also available in suppositories. As drugs of abuse, they are often smoked, sniffed, or injected.

Natural Opiates are Morphine, Codiene and Thebaine.

Semi-synthetic opiates (or opioids) include Heroin and Oxycodone (among others).

Common Synthetic Opioids include Methadone, and Pethidine (Demerol).


Heroin (a morphine derivative) is the most commonly abused narcotic.
(Some of the street names include: smack, horse, H, junk, dope or scag)

Heroin is an illegal Schedule I drug, meaning that it is in the group of the most highly addictive drugs. It poses special problems for those who inject it because of the risks of HIV, hepatitis B and C, and other diseases that can occur from sharing needles.

Pure heroin is a white powder with a bitter taste. Street heroin may vary in color from white to dark brown because of impurities or additives. There is a dark brown or black form of the drug, as dense as roofing tar or coal, known as “black tar.” Produced in Mexico, it is widely available in the western United States.

Street heroin is rarely pure. A “bag,” or single dose, may contain 50 milligrams of powder. In the past, very few of those milligrams were likely to be heroin — most of the bag was filled with such additives as milk sugar, powdered milk, or quinine. In 1980, the average bag was only 4 percent pure heroin. By the mid-Nineties, however, purity was generally 40 percent or higher.

Signs and symptoms of heroin use are:

Impaired mental functioning
Slowed down respiration
Constricted pupils

Signs of a heroin overdose include:

Shallow breathing
Pinpoint pupils
Clammy skin

The withdrawal symptoms associated with heroin/morphine addiction are usually experienced shortly before the time of the next scheduled dose. (approx. 6-24 hours)

Early symptoms include watery eyes, runny nose, yawning, and sweating. Restlessness, irritability, loss of appetite, nausea, tremors, and drug craving appear as the syndrome progresses. Severe depression and vomiting are common. The heart rate and blood pressure are elevated. Chills alternating with flushing and excessive sweating are also characteristic symptoms. Pains in the bones, muscles and extremities occur. Most of the overt physical symptoms will disappear within 7 to 10 days. (Doesn’t sound like fun does it!?)

Avoid all street drugs.  They are extremely dangerous.

Tags: Prescription Drugs Addiction · Street Drugs

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