Am Fam Physician. 2018;97(5):online
See related article on buprenorphine therapy for opioid use disorder
What are opioids?
Opioids (OH-pee-oyds) are a type of drug. Doctors give these drugs to people to make pain go away. Some people become addicted to them.
What is opioid use disorder?
Opioid use disorder is when you cannot stop taking the drugs, even if you want to, or can't stop yourself from using more than your doctor prescribed. People with this problem may not feel well if they do not take the opioids. They may have stomachaches, diarrhea, and a fever. This is called withdrawal.
What can I do if I have opioid use disorder?
Your doctor can give you medicine to help you stop taking opioids. You also should stay away from other people who are addicted and from places where you can get the drugs. You can go to a counselor or support group to talk about your problem.
Where can I get more information?
AAFP's Patient Information Resource
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
National Institute on Drug Abuse
National Library of Medicine
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
Crisis hotline: 1-800-273-8255
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration Opioid Treatment Program Directory