What is the difference between opiates and opioids? Ultimately, the two are very closely related. The main difference is that opiates are more naturally-based. Opioids are synthetic drugs and are created in labs. Beyond that, there is very little that separates opiates from opioids. In essence, opioids are just another form of opiates with artificial substances added to the drug. When talking about treatment facilities like an opiate detox center, we’re also looping opioids into the conversation.
When experts talk about opiate vs opioid, they often do so interchangeably due to very little distinction in the substances. As a form of opiates, opioids may include both illicit and prescription medication – both of which can lead to long-term dependency and addiction. So, If you hear the term, opiate and opioid, you can assume that most people are referring to the same substances. We treat both at our residential treatment center in Florida.
Opiate vs Opioid: Are There Any Real Differences?
Though the two are very similar and often interchanged, there are a few key differences between opiates and opioids:
The only real distinguishable difference is that opiates are derived straight from the opium-containing poppy plant. Drugs may be processed in a lab. However, there are no synthetic substances added to them. Common opiates include:
These drugs can come directly from the poppy plant and are ready to use as is once they have been developed in the lab.
An opioid is a synthetic or partly synthetic drug that has been injected with artificial active ingredients. The ingredients make the drug more potent. Furthermore, the ingredients help the drug act like the natural opiates in the human body, increasing their effectiveness. Common opioids include:
Is Heroin an Opiate or an Opioid?
When it comes to discussion about opiate vs opioid, people often bring up the drug heroin. The main question is whether heroin is a pure opiate or a synthetic opioid. It is possible to create heroin straight from the poppy plant.
However, heroin is often developed in black-market labs, using molecules from both the poppy plant and other synthetic substances. Ultimately, it’s difficult to predict exactly what chemicals are present in illicit heroin. Every time someone uses heroin to get high, they risk their health and their life as a result of this fact.
Opiate and Opioid: Which is More Addictive?
Ultimately, there isn’t a clear answer here. Heroin is widely considered to be one of the most addictive substances on the planet, with users often becoming chemically dependent after trying it just a few times.
The important thing to remember is that all of these drugs stem from the same source. As such, the poppy plant produces substances that are highly addictive in any context. When it comes to sheer numbers, more people are addictive to opioid-based medication than heroin. However, when access to prescription opioids is limited, many users often resort to using heroin as a cheaper alternative.
Treatment for Opioids and Opiates
The treatment for opioid and opiate addiction is essentially the same. A person may go through detox, rehab, and aftercare to complete recovery from dependency. Withdrawal symptoms may include nausea, high blood pressure, increased heart rate, hallucinations, anxiety, depression, cravings, and insomnia.
A person who is ending an addiction to opiates or opioids should consider inpatient or outpatient rehab and extended care to prevent a relapse. This is especially true if they have been using these drugs for several months or years. Rehab allows a person to get over their cravings and get back on the path to recovery with more reliable results.
Get Help for Opioid Addiction at Wellness Counseling and Residential Detox
Getting off of opioids can be difficult. However, with the right help, you can get on the road to recovery. Wellness Counseling & Residential Detox provides comprehensive treatment for both alcohol and drug addiction. Call 844.967.2741 or contact us online today to learn more about your recovery options.