Where Does Fentanyl Come From? Unveiling Origins and Effects

Fentanyl, a synthetic opioid, has gained notoriety for being 50 times more potent than heroin, and 100 times more potent than morphine. The use of Fentanyl led to a surge in opioid-related deaths and substance use disorders across the United States. In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 150 people die from synthetic opioid overdose every day. In this article, we will dive into the origins of this deadly substance and how it affects the body.

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Where Does Fentanyl Come From?

Fentanyl’s origin lies in the pharmaceutical realm, initially synthesized for medical purposes such as pain management and anesthesia. The drug quickly gained popularity because of its effectiveness, which also led to its illicit production.

As an opioid analgesic, it works by binding to the opioid receptors in the brain and spinal cord, which controls the body’s natural pain control system. Fentanyl inhibits the transmission of pain signals, which reduces the perception of pain.

Fentanyl is available in two forms: pharmaceutical fentanyl and illicitly manufactured fentanyl (IMF). The legitimate pharmaceutical production of fentanyl involves carefully controlled processes in regulated laboratories.

On the other hand, illicit fentanyl is often manufactured in clandestine laboratories, and the precursor chemicals may come from various sources, including legal suppliers, diverted pharmaceuticals, or the black market. IMFs also contribute to a significant number of overdose deaths due to its high potency.

What Does Fentanyl Look Like?

Fentanyl is commonly found in various forms, most commonly as a white powder, depending on its formulation.  Legitimate pharmaceutical fentanyl is manufactured and prescribed in different forms, including:

  • Transdermal patches
  • Injections
  • Lozenges or lollipops

Meanwhile, illicit fentanyl is sometimes sold as a powder, and maybe white or off-white. Liquid IMF can come in nasal sprays or eye drops. Fentanyl can also be mixed with other drugs like weed, heroin, cocaine, or methamphetamine.

What is Rainbow Fentanyl?

Rainbow fentanyl refers to brightly colored Fentanyl pills that come in a variety of shapes and sizes. The Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) identifies this as a concerning trend as drug cartels can use its appearance to resemble candies and attract children and young people.

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Fentanyl Street Names

The use of street names can contribute to the challenge of identifying and addressing the presence of these substances in communities. Illicitly obtained fentanyl may be referred to by various street names or slang terms, and these can vary regionally. Some common street names for fentanyl include:

  • Apache
  • Cash
  • China Girl
  • China Town
  • China White
  • Dance Fever
  • Friend
  • Goodfella
  • Jackpot
  • King Ivory
  • Murder 8
  • Percopop
  • Tango and Cash
  • TNT

This is not a definitive list of slang terms for Fentanyl and these names can change over time.

Fentanyl Side Effects

According to the DEA, 2 milligrams of fentanyl is considered a potential lethal dose, depending on factors such as body size, tolerance, and history of use. The potency of fentanyl renders it more hazardous than traditional opioids, leading to severe and often life-threatening side effects. These side effects are:

  • Drowsiness and sedation
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Constipation
  • Respiratory depression
  • Itching or rashes
  • Confusion or disorientation
  • Decreased blood pressure
  • Tolerance and dependence, leading to addiction

Users who abruptly stop using the drug can also experience fentanyl withdrawal symptoms such as anxiety, increased sweating, muscle aches, and insomnia. Because of fentanyl’s high potency, it should only be used under the supervision of health care professionals.

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Fentanyl Addiction Treatment

Treating fentanyl addiction involves a comprehensive approach, addressing both the physical and psychological aspects of substance use disorder. Overcoming addiction to fentanyl can be challenging, and professional assistance is often necessary. Here are some components of fentanyl addiction treatment:

  • Medical Detoxification: A process of gradually tapering off the drug under medical supervision.
  • Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT): Involves the use of medications like buprenorphine or methadone to reduce cravings and manage withdrawal symptoms
  • Counseling and Behavioral Therapies: Cognitive-behavioral therapy or Contingency Management can be effective in addressing the psychological aspects of addiction. Meanwhile, counseling helps patients develop coping strategies, identify potential triggers and make positive behavioral changes.
  • Inpatient or Outpatient Rehabilitation: Rehab facilities offer comprehensive treatment programs to provide intensive or flexible care, depending on the severity of addiction.
  • Support Groups: Provide a sense of community and peer support for individuals by sharing experiences and receiving encouragement.
  • Holistic Approaches: Some people may find benefit in complementary therapies such as yoga or meditation as part of a holistic treatment plan.

Fentanyl Detox Near Me

The alarming potency and widespread use of fentanyl pose a significant challenge to public health. Moreover, seeking treatment for fentanyl addiction is important., Fentanyl detox and specialized treatment programs offer hope for individuals struggling with opioid use disorders.

Our Scottsdale treatment facilities offer a personalized treatment plan and medical detox program that ensures our clients’ safety while providing a supportive and comfortable environment for recovery. We understand that each individual is different that’s why we make sure that our addiction treatment plans are tailored to each person’s needs.

If you or someone you know is struggling with fentanyl addiction, there is always help available. Talk to our addiction specialists and take a courageous step towards healing today.

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