What is Fentanyl?

When it comes to opioids, fentanyl addiction is one of our biggest concerns.

This opioid painkiller is a synthetic drug that blocks the pain receptors in your brain.

It also increases the release of the chemical dopamine, which is responsible for feelings of pleasure.

These two side effects are highly beneficial in medical settings.

These same effects contribute to their high potential for abuse and addiction.

The immediate side effects of fentanyl use are potent and shortlived.

The potential health consequences of fentanyl abuse or addiction may be more long term.

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Fentanyl Addiction Rates

Exact addiction rates can be difficult to track since so many addictions remain untreated.

What we can track more clearly is the damage that it causes. Synthetic opioids like fentanyl are present in more overdose deaths than any other drug category. As far as all opioid-related deaths go, 59% of them involve fentanyl. Both the potency of the drug in intentional use and the rates of accidental ingestion contribute to these numbers.

Fentanyl is easy to disguise. It produces a faster, more potent, and cheaper high than many other drugs.

Because it is so easy to use fentanyl as a filler, drug dealers often mix it into other drugs to cut their costs. Fentanyl mixes with heroin, cocaine, MDMA, or methamphetamine.

When you are unaccustomed to the potency of fentanyl, this practice can quickly lead to addiction or overdose. For many, accidental fentanyl ingestion leads to dangerous or even fatal consequences.

The best way to avoid this problem is to avoid illicit drug use altogether.


Fentanyl Addiction


When a drug alters your brain chemistry, the risk of abuse and addiction is there. When that same drug produces addictive effects like pain relief and happiness, the risk is higher.

Many people who have severe pains or troubling mental health issues gravitate toward substances that produce these effects.

Mental health and addiction are so strongly connected. Our mental health team has experience in treating a variety of conditions in this area.

If you are facing both a mental health disorder and an addiction to fentanyl, this is a dual diagnosis. Our treatment programs for fentanyl addiction can address this condition, too.

Addictions and mental health disorders are scary, but you do not have to face them alone. Asking for help is the first step in your journey toward a healthier life. You can find peace and clarity in sobriety. We will help you walk your path until you find it.

Signs of Fentanyl Addiction

There are many potential signs of fentanyl addiction. These can be either psychological or physical.

Physical symptoms may include:

  • Shallow breathing
  • Seizures
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Blurred vision
  • Itchiness
  • Constipation
  • Nausea or vomiting

Psychological symptoms often include periods of extreme moods. The most common are extreme happiness, confusion, euphoria, or drowsiness. You may experience these symptoms or others.

Drug reactions can be difficult to predict. Depending on the form, length, and frequency of your drug use, many different variables can alter your experience.

In long-term or heavy abuse, there is the potential for more serious, life-threatening, or fatal symptoms than the ones listed above.

Two of the most common of these are difficulty breathing and unconsciousness. The breathing issues associated with fentanyl abuse can lead to a condition called hypoxia. When the brain suffers a lack of oxygen, hypoxia occurs and may lead to coma, brain damage, or death.

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Fentanyl Addiction Withdrawal Symptoms

Since fentanyl is so potent and dangerous, you would expect the withdrawal symptoms associated with it to match.

The good news is that fentanyl withdrawal symptoms are not likely to be life-threatening. Going through the withdrawal process with guidance from a team of medical professionals will certainly make it easier.

Depending on your needs, we may administer an approved medication to ease your symptoms and reduce cravings.

You will have a safe, comfortable space in which to work through early sobriety.

Depending on several individual factors, your symptoms may vary in length and degree. Fentanyl withdrawal symptoms are often similar to flu symptoms.

These may include:

  • Muscle and bone pain
  • Sleep problems
  • Diarrhea and vomiting
  • Cold flashes with goosebumps
  • Uncontrollable leg movements
  • Severe cravings

Many fentanyl users try to stop on their own, but withdrawal symptoms drive them to relapse.

Fentanyl Addiction Colorado Pathfinders - A woman experiencing severe withdrawal symptoms from the lack of use of fentanyl

How Can We Help?

Pathfinders is the best place for comprehensive fentanyl addiction care in Colorado.

Once you walk through our doors, we will be with you for as long as you need us.

We offer programs spanning from thirty days to one year.

Call today to get started.

Pathfinders Recovery Center Colorado

  • 2953 S Peoria St. Suite 230 Aurora, CO 80014
  • 855-728-4363
  • Office Hours: M-F 8:30 am – 5:00 pm

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