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Opiate Addicts and the Vicious Cycle of Addiction

Everyday I read my local newspaper and articles on the topics of opiate addiction. I see the same types of thefts and drug arrests rising at rapid rates where I live. Opiate overdoses are at the highest rates ever recorded. Crimes related to drug abuse are also on the rise. Opiate abuse seems to be happening in every suburb and “nice town.” across the country.

I hear it all the time, “This town used to be so nice but now you should see it, you wouldn't believe how bad it is.” Towns in the United States that once were known to be safe are now having locals locking their homes and cars whenever they leave them for even a short amount of time. Drug related crimes are on the rise and no town is safe. 

You may know a friend or family member that has been in trouble with the law due to their addiction. It is very common for someone to steal and break the law to help feed their addiction. They may have never been the type of person to hurt anyone but over time the mentality of an addict changes. This is actually caused by key chemicals in the brain being depleted which causes changes in the brain. It may can cause a completely logical and caring person to only think about the drug and make some horrible life decisions.

When an addict starts to go through opiate withdrawal, they may feel as if they are getting the flu.  These symptoms drastically worsen by the hour with extreme depression, anxiety, and irritability.  This is then followed by vomiting, diarrhea, and the sweats. This is because the chemicals in the brain that fulfill the natural feelings of well-being are very low. The addict feels as if their body is shutting down and many will do whatever it takes to stop the pain. The problem with the withdrawal symptoms and usage of the drug is it is almost instantaneous. When a user is withdrawing and uses their drug of choice, the symptoms disappear within minutes. Knowing this, extreme measures are sometimes taken by addicts to get their drugs including robbing, stealing, and other crimes to get money for more pills.

It is common for addicts to steal from friends and family first. Psychologically they feel they won't get in as much trouble for their actions as if they stole from strangers.  Addiction is very strong, and if they can't steal from friends or family, it's common for break-ins and even robberies of pharmacies. If the addict starts to steal from the public, the idea of serious legal consequences do not seem to deter their judgment. But in almost all cases, as soon as they use their drugs after the crime, they feel instant remorse and depression. This causes a vicious cycle. The drug you committed the crime for to stop the sickness and depression actually causes more depression. This is the reality of the downward spiral and emptiness that opiates provide. This cycle will eventually take your life or land you in prison. Do not gamble with your life by abusing opiates any longer, you will lose in the end.

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