According to Houston first responders, there was a 17% increase in opioid overdose cases in 2020’s second quarter compared to the second quarter of 2019. Houston is facing double health emergencies, one related to Covid-19 and the second the worsening opioid problem.
Drug manufacturers and suppliers advertised opioids as a pain reliever while concealing their dangerous effects and addictive nature from the public and physicians. They misled the users about its use for several years without any efforts to detect, monitor, and report the alarming situation of opioid use to the government. As a result, the US recently found itself in an opioid epidemic that has led to substantial injuries and accidents to the public.
If you are in Houston and feel duped by drug makers, get in touch with Houston opioid lawyers who can analyze your damage and fight against the manufacturers and suppliers for maximum recovery.
Use of Prescription Opioids
Opioids are naturally found in opium poppy plants. Manufacturers either make them directly from the plant or make them in labs with the same chemical composition. Your physician in Houston might have prescribed them to you as medicines to relieve pain and relax your body. People often use them to treat mild to moderate pain, and sometimes it is also recommended for diarrhea and coughing.
Since opioids can make a person feel high and relaxed, some people also like to use them for non-medical purposes. However, now people have started realizing its addictive nature and harmful effects. Opioids can cause dizziness, drowsiness, and impair thinking and judgment, leading to vehicle crashes and motor accidents. Over the last couple of years, more people are dying in the US due to opioid overdose than car crashes.
As Houston is seeing a surge in the Opioid crisis in recent times, the Houston Health Department and Houston Recovery Center are taking massive efforts to address the crisis that leads to serious consequences.
How Opioid Misuse Happens?
Prescription opioid drugs are generally safe if taken for some time as prescribed by the physician, but there are chances of misuse due to their narcotic effects. People may misuse them by:
- taking it in a higher dose than prescribed
- taking an opioid drug prescribed to someone else
- taking it to get high
Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicate that about 130 people die every day from an opioid overdose. Many of these fatalities commence with a call to 9-1-1 for emergency assistance following an overdose.
Effects of Opioids on the Brain
Opioids work by binding to and activating the opioid receptors, spinal cord, and other body organs. These are the cells related to feelings of pleasure and pain. When attached, opioids block signals of pain that the brain sends to the body and release dopamine. It strongly reinforces drug consumption action, as a result of which the user wants to replicate the experience again and again.
Possible Effects of Opioids
Apart from relieving pain and making you feel happy and relaxed, opioids have adverse effects as well, including the following:
- Slowed breathing
Slowed breathing caused by opioid misuse causes hypoxia that can have long-term and short-term effects on your neurological and psychological health, thereby causing coma, brain damage, and even death.
Older adults are at a higher risk of accidental abuse or misuse, as they usually have more chronic diseases and prescriptions. Some people who misuse opioids tend to share injections, thereby increasing the risk of HIV and other infectious diseases. Since opioids can impair a person’s judgment, they are also at a higher risk of infectious diseases due to unprotected sex. In Texas, around 72,000 people have HIV/AIDS, out of which 21,500 are present in Houston alone.
So, these are the common injuries and accidents related to opioid use. If you are in Houston and think you have suffered a lot due to opioid use or addiction and blame opioid manufacturing and supplying companies for concealing these effects of their product, you can file a claim against them with the help of Houston Opioid Lawyers.
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Last modified: February 15, 2021