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Opiates vs Opioids: What's the difference?

Updated: Apr 14, 2021

They sound similar. They are even often used interchangeably. It's easy to think that both opiates and opioids are both one in the same. And while they might have the same effects and both can be very dangerous, the two terms are different.

Here's what differentiates them:

Opiates vs Opioids

The term "Opiates" is usually described as a drug that naturally derives from the opium poppy plant. Opiates are used for the alkaloids found in the opium plant that help relieve pain. Though both opiates and opioids are both connected to opium, it's important to note that opiates are naturally-occurring. Common opiate drugs are:

  • Heroin

  • Opium

  • Morphine

  • Codeine

On the other hand, we have opioids. As mentioned above, opioids are very similar to opiates and have very similar effects. Opioids, however, are synthetic drugs. They are made in labs to produce the same effects as opiates, but they are not natural. Common opioid drugs include:

  • Demerol

  • Oxycodone

  • Fentanyl

  • Methadone

  • Percodan

  • Percocet

In summary, opiates are the naturally derived products of opium, whereas, opioids are the synthetic versions. It's also important to know that the term "opioids" can also encompass all opiates. But all opioids are not necessarily opiates.

How To Get Off Opiates or Opioids

Opioid abuse has become a major problem in the United States. Our hometown is even considered one of the worst cities in America for opioid abuse. But when someone has been using opiates or opioids consistently, their bodies become dependent on that drug. To simply stop taking that drug could send that person into withdrawal and can be potentially very dangerous.

Capeside Addiction Care is a new option for people struggling with opioid addictions. Our software will connect you with a doctor nearby to treat you. Our program uses telemedicine so that you only need to physically visit a doctor once a month. All our group therapy sessions are done online and anonymously. CSAC allows you to get treatment from the comfort of your own home. Contact us today to learn more about our program!

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