Morphine is a potent opiate analgesic medication, considered to be the prototypical opioid. The most abundant alkaloid found in opium, morphine is obtained from the common poppy.
In traditional medicine, morphine is largely recognized as the gold standard of analgesics used for pain relief, and contains properties that make it a highly addictive drug that users quickly develop a tolerance for and dependence on. Morphine also has become available for illegal sale, with street names for morphine including “dreamer, “Miss Emma” and “morf.”
Morphine Addiction and Drug Abuse
In appropriate and routine medical treatment, morphine is dispensed as a medication to target, treat and relieve pain, as well as a general anesthesia for many types of surgeries. Without morphine, many of the millions of surgeries performed each year could not take place. For illicit purposes, morphine delivers the user to a state of extreme relaxation. The synthetic high is addictive, and over time, many users will come to rely on morphine to regulate their moods, mitigate the impact of stress and give them the necessary boost to function in society.
Morphine is a highly versatile opioid, available in an injectable syrup form, as a suppository or in a tablet or capsule variety. In syrup form, morphine is commonly used in medical settings so patients may have gradual access to its pain-relieving effects, though professionals usually control the amount dispensed to the patient to avoid abuse or accidental overdose.
In the pill form, morphine is generally granted in extended release so as not to overdose the body with its narcotic effect and should be taken with food to avoid an upset stomach. The dosage amount of morphine will depend on the target pain and the cause behind it, but varies from 15 milligrams to 200 milligrams. The dosage also determines the color of the tablets, ranging from white to yellow.
Signs of Morphine Addiction
Physical signs of morphine drug addiction may include include tell-tale track marks, slurred speech or ocular symptoms such as blurry vision or constricted pupils. Some morphine users will also experience sweating or chills, dizziness, drowsiness and fainting, as a result of use. Muscles can also become affected, leading to muscular weakness, uncoordinated muscle movements and muscle rigidity.
The skin may experience allergic reactions, a pins and needles sensation, intense itching, rashes or hives. Many individuals have trouble with digestion and urination due to morphine abuse, including constipation, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting, abdominal pain tremors, an inability to urinate and water retention.
Further symptoms of morphine addiction can also include dental decay or gingivitis due to persistent dry mouth, severe headaches, irregular blood pressure, decreased appetite and even seizures. Many morphine-addicted individuals also experience a compromise in memory formation and recall, as well as severely interrupted sleep cycles and insomnia. Other psychological symptoms of morphine addiction may include anxiety or depression, strange thinking, irritability, nervousness or hallucinations.