Usually, because of its addictive properties, morphine is only prescribed for acute pain episodes. Unfortunately, people who’ve been given a legitimate prescription for morphine can find themselves addicted after the medicine is exhausted. Without help, people with a morphine addiction can turn to harder street drugs in the opium class, such as heroin. Heroin addiction and overdose deaths are on the rise as a direct consequence of the opioid crisis, of which morphine plays a role. Worldwide, an estimated 15 million people suffer from opiate addiction.
Addiction is a horrible illness that is almost impossible to overcome without outside help, support, and intervention. Most people who attempt to quit drugs on their own, morphine notwithstanding, will start out with optimism and determination. But then withdrawal symptoms start. Withdrawals are the painful side effects a person experiences when they stop taking an addictive substance. Some drugs, such as benzodiazepines and alcohol, can have dangerous side effects which can cause seizures, comas, and death. With morphine, withdrawals are incredibly uncomfortable and distressing and can lead to long-term side effects if a person doesn’t get outside medical help during the withdrawal phase.