Why can’t I just quit taking opiates?

Some people can. Opioids are used on a regular basis for pain management either from an injury or surgery. These people are given a specific amount that allows them to control their pain and stop taking opioids. The reason is that the body can produce a similar chemical that can compensate for the opioid chemical up to a certain point. But, once someone starts abusing opioids and take more and more to reach or maintain the euphoric sensation, the body cannot produce enough compensating chemicals to match the same level as this external input. At that point, the body goes into withdrawal which can make the person have symptoms of anxiety, agitation, muscle aches, increased tearing, insomnia, runny nose, sweating, yawning, abdominal cramping, diarrhea, dilated pupils, goose bumps, nausea, and vomiting. While withdrawal is not life threatening, they can be very uncomfortable.

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