Alternatives To Opioids
By D. S. Mitchell & Trevor K. McNeil
Definitions: *Opiate and opioid are often used interchangeably although that interchange of usage is not precisely accurate. The following would be more correct:
Opiate: A drug (such as morphine, codeine or heroin) containing or derived from opium or the opium poppy, used to alleviate pain, or induce sleep or euphoria.
Opioid: A synthetic or semi-synthetic drug producing an opium-like effect, often prescribed for the alleviation of moderate to severe pain; a prescription painkiller in the opiate class.
With drugs, even those considered alternatives to opioids, there is always a risk. Even a “safe” drug such as caffeine. Caffeine is regularly consumed by children, and has had documented negative effects. The same goes for nicotine, deemed for the most part “safe” except when smoked by children. Some of those effects include paranoia, muscle spasms and heart arrhythmia’s. The question becomes how much of a risk is there; and are the positive effects worth the negative risks?