Fentanyl is an opiate pain reliever that is synthetic. It is usually prescribed for extreme pain and eliminates any pain in the body. Fentanyl is 100 times more potent than morphine. This drug can be taken several ways, the most common of which are patches, dissolvable tongue films or pills. Most drugs are designed to release over a period of time, even with drugs like heroin or morphine the entire effect of the drug is not immediately fell all at once, but rather a rush that dissipates over time. Because fentanyl is designed to release the effects more quickly users run a greater risk of overdose with fentanyl.
Addiction to fentanyl can occur immediately. The intense feeling of euphoria felt from using fentanyl is known to be a highly sought after feeling that will cause users to use the drug more and more frequently causing their body/mind to become addicted to the drug. So, how long does it take to get addicted to fentanyl? In most cases, right away/after first use.
Fentanyl goes by many different names. Some common street names include:
- Dance Fever
- King Ivory
- Murder 8
- He Man
- China Town
Fentanyl Addiction vs Heroin Addiction
Fentanyl is similar to heroin in that they are both dangerous, highly addictive drugs that causes intense euphoria and dependence is almost immediate. Heroin however, is derived from natural substances while fentanyl is man-made and can be absorbed through the skin while heroin is injected, smoked or snorted. Fentanyl is also cheaper and more easily accessible because it is used as a pharmaceutical to help alleviate extreme pain. While the risk of overdose and death is extremely high in both drugs, fentanyl carries a much deadlier risk in that the effects wear off more quickly even though the drug is still in the body.
Fentanyl Abuse Statistics
Fentanyl abuse has become the “new face” of addiction overdose and death. With the fentanyl addiction rate has skyrocketed and claiming responsibility for a drastic rise in drug-related death. In 2016 fentanyl received addiction attention when it was discovered that fentanyl was directly related to the death of the famous musician Prince. Fentanyl addiction is known to affect numerous people, not those just looking for a high. Because fentanyl is used as a prescription to alleviate pain, anybody is at risk of becoming addicted to this drug.
In addition to using fentanyl as a pill or tongue strip, fentanyl is also abused through the patch. The fentanyl patch contains a substance similar to gel in which addicts remove the gel and ingest the entire three-day supply at once. Additionally, addicts also use multiple patches at one, smoke or snort the gel, chew the patches and various other ways of abusing the patch in order to get a more intense rush or high. Fentanyl patch abuse is extremely dangerous and can result in difficulty breathing, extreme fatigue, trouble with memory, dizziness, confusion, inability to walk, coma and death.
Fentanyl Abuse Stories
Fentanyl abuse can damage the lives of many, many people. By reading the stories of other addicts it is possible to see how fentanyl has changed their lives and see that fentanyl only leads to pain and through treatment will recovery be possible.
From CBC, one woman’s story sheds light on the terrible side effects of fentanyl.
“I remember the day that fentanyl came out… My dealer said, ‘You know, I’ve got these new pills, they’re fake oxys.’ He didn’t tell me they were fentanyl, because nobody knew what fentanyl was yet. He just said they’re a hundred times stronger and they’re only five dollars more. And I was just like, ‘OK!’ because, you know, I was getting a pretty high tolerance at this point.”
Kati barely takes a breath. She’s deep into reminiscing about how her love-hate relationship with fentanyl began.
“I could buy one and I’d crush them up and snort them. Put them into four lines, and two lines would last me a full day. That’s how strong it was,” she says. “And if I did a whole pill, I’d OD.”
At the mention of overdose, Kati suddenly grows more serious.
“Every time I do dope, I know I’m taking a risk. I know I might die. But it doesn’t matter how many times I’ve OD’d, I still use the next day because the withdrawals are so bad.”
Read the full story here: Kati’s Story
Accidental Fentanyl Overdose
Because fentanyl is so dangerous it has an extremely high risk of overdose. If you believe that somebody is overdosing on fentanyl it is imperative that you call 911 immediately. If left alone with no help fentanyl overdose is deadly. Below is a list of signs and symptoms of overdose.
- Weak muscles
- Extreme fatigue/sleepiness
- Profoundly slow heartbeat
- Very low blood pressure
- Bluish tint to nails and lips
If left untreated, fentanyl overdose can have damaging and lasting effects on the body. One of the most common effects of fentanyl overdose is brain damage due to respiratory depression causing hypoxia.
Help for Fentanyl Addiction
If you or a loved one is suffering from fentanyl addiction the most important thing about this addiction to know is, you are not alone. There is help available to those suffering in active addiction. Through detox and addiction treatment it is possible to leave a life after fentanyl addiction in which the use of the drug is no longer active in day to day life. Don’t wait any longer, seek addiction treatment help today.