Laudanum Abuse and Addiction

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Laudanum Abuse and Addiction

Laudanum is also referred to as Tincture of Opium is an alcoholic herbal remedy that contains around 10% of powdered opium, which is the equivalent of 1% of Morphine. Laudanum is very bitter to taste and has, pretty much, all opium alkaloids such as Codeine and Morphine. Laudanum is a very potent drug that used to be used often to treat many kinds of ailments. Currently Laudanum is not used as often as it was before the 20th century even though it is still prescribed and if abused can bring about addiction.

Why is Laudanum Prescribed?

Currently the only medically approved uses for the drug Laudanum in the U.S. are for the treatment of pain and for diarrhea. Nowadays there are more synthetic, as well we semi-synthetic, compounds that are more advanced in the treatment of pain, which is why Laudanum is not as prescribed by physicians as much as it used to be. However, there are still people that can easily become addicted to Laudanum. Since Laudanum is basically a mixture of alcohol and various opiates it is a drug that is seen to be rather outdated. If it is prescribed these days, which is not much, it is used as an ant diarrheal.

How Laudanum Is Abused?

Since Laudanum contains opiates people that take the drug can have a feeling of euphoria, which is why it is easy addictive. However, Laudanum is not a street drug and it is not easy to obtain since it is not prescribed often. In standard doses Laudanum will not give a person a euphoric feeling, as it needs to be taken in larger doses.

Considering that Laudanum is an opiate-based narcotic the potential is high for tolerance to the drug as well as addiction. Addiction to an opiate drug, such as Laudanum, can come about by the use of the drug over a prolonged period of time and if a person abruptly stops taking it they may go through withdrawal symptoms.

Opiates, such as Laudanum, bring about powerful effects since they activate the opiate receptors that go through a person's body. When the opiate reaches the brain it will then activate the receptors and brings about a feeling of euphoria. When Laudanum, as well as other opiates, is taken the brain will produce Endorphins, which can bring about nausea, vomiting, hormonal regulation, and pain relief.

Opiates also act directly in the body's respiratory center in the brain stem, where they will bring about a slowing of activity. Some of the other side effects of Laudanum and other opiates are:

  1. Drowsiness
  2. Fatigue
  3. Depression
  4. Insomnia
  5. Anxiousness
  6. Upset Stomach
  7. Dry Mouth
  8. Pupil Constriction
  9. Itching
  10. Hallucination
  11. Delirium
  12. Sweating
  13. Muscle Pain
  14. Bone Pain
  15. Irritability
  16. Muscle Spasms

Laudanum Abuse Treatment Options

The addiction to Laudanum, as well as opiates, is a dangerous one, but there is help available for those seeking recovery from prescription drug addiction. There are many outpatient and in-patient drug treatment programs for people that are addicted to opiates. People that have a severe addiction to Laudanum or opiates may have to go through the detoxification process, which can be made easier by going through an in-patient treatment program that will have a medical staff on site.

It does not matter if a person goes through an in-patient or outpatient treatment program for Laudanum or opiate abuse, counseling is used in the program. If a person opens up about their substance abuse addiction, it can make conquering that addiction easier. There is group and one-on-one counseling available depending on what type of substance abuse program is used. However, it has been shown that in-patient programs are more successful and this is especially the case with opiate drugs since they are so addictive.

Any time a person is addicted to Laudanum or opiates they should seek out the services of a professional drug counselor. They can use their expertise in order to help find the type of program that is just right for a person's substance abuse issue. The more a person gets into the right type of substance abuse program the more likely it is that they will be successful in completing the program.

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