Fentanyl Overdose

Fentanyl is a powerful synthetic opiate analgesic that is typically used to treat patients with cancer or to manage pain after surgery. Like heroin, morphine, and other opioid drugs, Fentanyl works by binding to the body’s highly concentrated opiate receptors in areas of the brain that control pain and emotions. When opiate drugs bind to these receptors, they can drive up dopamine levels in the brain’s reward areas and thus produce a state of euphoria and relaxation. Because it is a water-soluble drug, Fentanyl comes in many different forms. It can be injected, eaten in the form of a candy or used as a patch when it is taken as a medicine. In this drug’s illegal form it comes as a pill or in powder form where it can be smoked or snorted.

Signs of Overdose:

  • Headache
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Dizzines
  • Severe breathing problems
  • Hallucinations
  • Anxiety
  • Swelling of certain body parts
  • Pain or numbness at injection site
  • Unconsciousness
  • Drowsiness
  • Cold skin
  • Low blood pressure
  • Slow heartbeat
  • Death

Reasons for Dependency and Overdose

Fentanyl can produce drug dependence similar to that produced by morphine. Fentanyl has the potential for abuse, often leading to physical and psychological dependence, but may be a necessary to control chronic pain. Your doctor will have to take these factors into account before prescribing this drug. Overdoses can occur if you take too much Fentanyl at one time or if you are taking other drugs and medications. Many pharmaceutical companies have invented newer patch forms of the drug so it cannot be easily taken as an illegal drug.

Help and Treatment

Overall, fentanyl is a safe and effective drug, so long as the proper precautions are made to prevent overdose. If you suspect that someone has overdosed on Fentanyl, immediately call 9-1-1 or your local emergency number so the patient can be immediately treated with an opiate antagonist. For those who are abusers of Fentanyl but have not overdosed, you should enter a detox center for daily treatment. Because Fetanyl is only prescribed for long-term, severe pain, an abuser must slowly digress off the drug so that they will not have extreme withdrawal symptoms. Entering under a physician’s care is the best way to free a patient of Fentanyl addiction. The most common way to treat Fentanyl addiction is to undergo a procedure called the Waismann Method. This is a procedure done under anesthesia that will induce and speed the withdrawal. This method treats Fentanyl addiction as a physical disease that can be overcome with advanced medical techniques. The Fentanyl detox treatment is performed in a full-service hospital under the strict supervision of one of the medical directors. The patient will be followed every step of the way, from admission to release, and is assisted in creating a plan for remaining opiate-free once they have completed their Fentanyl detox. If you or someone you know has a Fentanyl addiction, get help now. It’s never too late to live a drug-free, healthy lifestyle.

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