“Opioid” is a general term that includes all natural and synthetic versions of opiates (substances derived from the opium poppy plant). Opioids include both heroin and prescription painkillers. Like all drugs, opioids attach to the neurotransmitters in the brain -- specifically the dopamine neurotransmitters. Dopamine is responsible for feelings of pleasure and reward. Natural opioids are produced in our bodies. These natural opioids bind to endorphin neurotransmitters. Endorphins block the brain’s stress and pain receptors, causing feelings of euphoria. This is why opioids work to relieve pain. The powerful euphoria produced by opioids release cannot be attained by a natural release of endorphins. The only way to re-experience the rush is to use more, which quickly lead to addiction.

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Many people who become addicted to opioids start with legitimate prescriptions. Unfortunately, the nature of these drugs easily lead to addiction. Opioids are widely prescribed for pain management connected with surgery or an injury. The most commonly prescribed opioids include:

  • Codeine
  • Morphine
  • Oxycodone (OxyContin, Percocet)
  • Hydrocodone (Vicodin)
  • Methadone
  • Fentanyl
As tolerance builds, users are forced to take more and more opioids to achieve the desired effect. Physical and psychological addiction soon follow. Tolerance never “levels out,” so users continue to need increasing doses of opioids to function. This phenomenon is a common contributor to opioid overdoses.


Opioid addiction has both physical and behavioral symptoms. If you notice any of the following in a loved one, they may need help: Intermittent euphoria Rapidly changing moods

  • Getting numerous prescriptions from different doctors
  • Financial problems
  • Isolation
  • Confusion
  • Nodding off and drowsiness
  • Shallow breathing
  • Small pupils
Opioid addiction substantially impacts your health - physical health, emotional health, and financial health. Maintaining the addiction becomes the most important thing in life -- many opioid users resort to crime and eventually start using illegal street drugs like heroin, which are cheaper ways to achieve the same high.


At Tree House Recovery, we don’t simply address the symptoms of addiction. Our eight interconnected modalities work together to heal you as a whole person. Our highly adaptive program is designed to create lasting recovery for suffering from opioid addictions. To take the first steps in your recovery, call us 24/7 at (855) 202-2138.


Being familiar with the modes of use, street names, and signs of opioid addiction can allow you to identify when it is a problem. If you suspect that someone close to you is abusing opioids, call us anytime at (855) 202-2138.


  • Codeine: Cody, Cs, Purple, Schoolboy, Sizzurp, Syrup, T-3, Lean
  • Hydrocodone: Lorris, Norco, Viko, Vikes, Watsons
  • Methadone: Done, Dollie, Wafers
  • Oxycodone: Blues, OC, O, Percs, Roxies, Oxy 30s, Oxy 40s, Oxy 80s
  • Suboxone(Buprenorphine): Bupes, Oranges, Stops, Stop Signs, Subs
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    Opioid pills are commonly snorted. Signs of this include rolled-up dollars, mirrors covered with powder, and partially burnt straws.


    Opioids can also be shot (used intravenously). Red flags include “track marks”, burnt or bent spoons, and q-tips with missing cotton.


    Because many opioids come as pills, they can easily be abused orally. Warning signs include running out of prescriptions opioids early.


    Opioids are often smoked using tinfoil. Evidence of this includes hollowed-out pens, partially melted straws, and missing spoons.

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