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Risks of Opioid Drug Abuse

Table of Contents

It is well known that there are inherent risks with using street drugs, such as heroin, but not as many people are aware of the risks of opioid drug abuse and prescription drugs. Taking too much of the prescribed dosage, snorting, or injecting the medication can lead to problems that many do not consider.
Since the opiate pain reliever is prescribed, many do not give it the respect it deserves. Still, some are predisposed to certain risk factors and side effects of opiates. It would help if you considered these dangerous side effects of using an opioid drug.

Opioid Dependency

The risk of addiction is present with many drugs. Most people equate street drugs with addiction, but it is surprisingly easy to become dependent on prescription pain killers. This would entail taking more of the medication than prescribed, taking it so that it is not intended, or taking it despite the negative impact on your life. As with heroin, prescription opiates could be at risk for these behaviors.
Determining who becomes dependent on these medications is not possible. It has nothing to do with a person’s relative weakness or strength. It is simply a risk factor of the medication, and it can come down to body chemistry. If you need prescription pain medications for chronic pain, it is important to take them only as directed and prescribed dosages.


One of the possible risks of taking an opiate drug is an overdose. This is more common when taking street drugs that don’t have a dosage rating assigned to them. In this way, users take what they think is a small dose and overdose on too much bag for them. Also, with physical dependence, the drug user will need more to create a high. For this reason, taking more medication is a primary cause of overdose.
It should be noted that prescription medications could also cause an opioid overdose. Most people take the drugs as prescribed, but when they are taken in dosages greater than the doctor intends, an overdose is possible. This also applies to taking the drugs through other routes, such as snorting or injecting. If you bring the drug into the bloodstream this way, it could bypass the liver and kidneys that filter out some drugs. The dose could be too high in a pill form to safely inject, and this causes opioid overdose.


Street drug and prescription drug abuse could lead to disease when the opioid drug is injected. First, dirty needles shared between users can lead to HIV and hepatitis B, both of which are deadly diseases. They are bloodborne, and they can easily be transferred from one user to another if the needles are shared.
However, one important point that is often ignored with injecting drugs is the high risk of infection. If the sites used for injection are not properly sterilized, as would happen in a hospital, and it can lead to local infection at the site. Besides, since the drug is being introduced into the bloodstream, it is quite common to get a systemic infection or sepsis. This type of infection could be deadly, and it can be difficult to treat.
Injecting drugs of any kind outside the hospital venue usually opens the user up to deadly and stubborn diseases that require focused medical attention. It is just another way that drug use can harm the user.

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