If You Have Ever Asked, “What Does Fentanyl Do to the Body?” Here is Your Answer.
Fentanyl is a potent opioid medication used for anesthesia in surgical procedures or maintenance of chronic, severe pain. It’s typically administered intravenously or by injection into the muscle. However, there are various other forms of this drug that include a sublingual spray, nasal spray, patch that is absorbed through the skin, and a sublingual tablet. But specifically, what does fentanyl do? It binds opioid receptors, which blocks pain signals to the brain. This causes euphoric feelings that can cause users the easily get hooked. Fentanyl is similar to morphine, but almost twice as more powerful.
Unfortunately, fentanyl is highly addictive and can cause multiple health problems if used improperly. In addition to the damage this substance can do if abused alone, multiple drug interactions with this drug exist as well. Taking certain medications, such as certain narcotics, sleeping aids, and medications that affect serotonin levels, can increase the risk of severe health issues, including accidental fentanyl overdose.
What Does Fentanyl Do to the Body?
Certain side effects come with fentanyl use, including nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, drowsiness, insomnia, sweating, respiratory depression, headache, chills, and fatigue. Less common issues include depression, swelling in legs, abdominal pain, anxiety, tingling, hallucinations, and confusion.
The effects of fentanyl resemble those of heroin and other opioid substances. Because fentanyl manipulates chemistry of the brain and effects areas of the brain where respiratory functions take place, difficulty breathing is possible with this drug. It’s important to take this medication only as it has been prescribed to you. Higher dosages or frequent use of this drug of high potency causes fentanyl overdose.
What Are Fentanyl Overdose Symptoms?
The risk of fentanyl abuse is higher in individuals with a family history of drug abuse or mental illness. Overdose occurs when too much of a substance has been taken, whether intentional or accidental. Fentanyl overdose symptoms include:
- Difficulty breathing
- Extreme fatigue
- Impaired thinking
- Trouble walking
In extreme cases, low heart rate, coma, and even death are possible. Getting emergency help is imperative. To reverse fentanyl overdose, opioid receptor antagonists, such as naloxone, will be administered.
Why Should I Get Help For My Fentanyl Addiction?
Many people have asked, “What does fentanyl do to my body over time?” Well, once the brain becomes tolerant to opioid substances, the feelings of euphoria and pleasure that fentanyl caused before might not be felt anymore.
If you know someone who has become tolerant of fentanyl and has been exhibiting drugs-seeking behavior, try to explain the importance of getting professional help for fentanyl addiction. Even if the problem hasn’t been occurring long-term, fentanyl tolerance can lead to dependence and full-blown addiction resulting in fentanyl overdose.
There is no shame in seeking drug addiction rehabilitation for fentanyl addiction; in fact, it’s the responsible choice. If you or someone you know has an addiction to opioid substances, an inpatient or residential rehabilitation could be beneficial. Receiving 24-hour supervision from medical professionals will ensure safety during the fentanyl withdrawal process.
What Happens During Fentanyl Withdrawal?
Trying fentanyl withdrawal without help from medical professionals or drug treatment specialists is highly discouraged, since it can cause serious health risks. Fentanyl withdrawal symptoms may begin as soon as 12 hours after the last dose. Symptoms typically peak within 3-5 days and can last anywhere up to 2 weeks, depending on the individual. Depression and drug cravings may still occur, however, for years later.
Some fentanyl withdrawal symptoms include: restlessness, enlarged pupils, sweating, chills, muscle and joint pain, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, weakness, rapid heart beat and increased respirations. These symptoms can worsen in individuals who suffer from asthma or other breathing problems.
Even after the withdrawal is complete, maintaining mental stability is just as important. Individual and group therapy sessions are vital in any drug addiction rehabilitation program to strengthen the understanding of addiction and help find ways to avoid relapse.
If you still have questions like “What does fentanyl do?” or “How can I get help?” contact Better Addiction Care and speak to a drug treatment specialist. Call us today at 1.800.429.7690.