Connecticut Opioid
Response Initiative
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  WHAT ARE OPIOIDS

Opioids are psychoactive chemicals. They can occur naturally in the resin of the poppy plant or can be made in a laboratory. Opioids that are derived from the opium poppy are called opiates. Opioids work by binding to opioid receptors in the brain and other parts of the body. There are three main types:

  • Natural opiates, including morphine and codeine
  • Semi-synthetic opioids, including oxycodone and heroin
  • Synthetic opioids, including fentanyl and tramadol
More about commonly misused opioids:
 
     Heroin  -   Fentanyl  -   Prescription opiods

  COMMON OPIOID MYTHS

There are many misperceptions about opioids and opioid use disorders. Here are some of the most common myths, debunked:


Myth:  Opioids are the most effective drugs for chronic and acute pain.

Truth:  Studies have not shown opioids to be significantly more effective than other drugs at relieving chronic pain and have found that opioids have [more severe side effects] than other pain treatments.

A [recent study] also concluded that treating acute pain with NSAIDs such as ibuprofen and acetaminophen was as effective as treating acute pain with opioids.

Myth:  Taking a medication to treat opioid use disorder is just substituting one addiction for another.

Truth:  The [medications] used to treat opioid use disorder are prescribed or administered under monitored, controlled conditions and have been proven to be safe and effective when used as directed. When used in maintenance settings, these medications are not substitutes for heroin or other opioids.

These medications save countless lives by helping individuals get stabilized and allowing them access to treatments for medical, psychological, and other problems so they can contribute effectively to their families and to society.

Myth:  Opioid use disorder always starts with an opioid prescription for acute pain.

Truth:  While prescription opioid use is a [risk factor] for illicit opioid use, it is just one of a number of factors that can lead to medication misuse or the use of illicit substances.

[Studies] show that only a small fraction of people who misuse prescribed pain relievers switch to heroin or other illicit opioids.

In fact, a [national survey] reported that less than 4% of people who had misused prescription opioids started using heroin within five years.

 

 © 2019 By Connecticut Opioid Response Initiative