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What are Opiates?

Prescription Drugs (Rx) and Heroin:

Some prescription drugs are called opioids, or narcotics, which can enhance, slow down, or alter brain activity. When prescribed, they are used for treating pain. They come as multi-colored tablets and capsules; some can be in liquid form. They are swallowed and may be injected when abused. Common drugs are Adderall, Dexedrine, Ritalin, Mebaral, Quaaludes, Xanax and Valium, Nembutal, Codeine, OxyContin, Percocet, and Vicodin. Heroin: A highly addictive drug derived from morphine. It affects the brain’s pleasure systems and interferes with the brain’s ability to perceive pain. It can be injected or smoked in a cigarette or pipe. Pure heroin is a white powder with a bitter taste. Most illicit heroin is sold as a white or brownish powder and is usually “cut” with other drugs or with substances such as sugar, starch, powdered milk, or other poisons or unknown substances. Another form of heroin known as “black tar” may be sticky, like roofing tar, or hard, like coal. Its color may vary from dark brown to black.

Signs and Symptoms

Depression of nervous system
Slurred speech
Constricted pupils
Droopy eyelids
Impaired night vision
Impaired memory
Judgment and Coordination
Stressed respiratory system





Muscle and Bone Pain

Drug craving


Diarrhea and Vomiting

Cold flashes with goose bumps

Kicking movements

Side Effects

Collapsed veins

Infection of the heart lining and veins


Liver disease

Drug additives that clog veins

Death of cells in vital organs

Increased risk of overdose

Potential for heart attack

Potential for lethal seizures

Physical dependence

Rebound effect

Paranoid and suicidal thoughts

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