Depression continues to threaten humanity across the globe, with nearly half of the suicidal cases involving depressed individuals. The number of people having depressive episodes at least once a day continues to rise significantly, with the American adult population leading the pack.
Opioids are medications that relieve pain. Opioid medications bind to the areas of the brain that control pain and emotions. Using opioids drives up levels of the feeling good hormone dopamine in the brain’s reward areas and an intense feeling of euphoria is produced. Medications that fall within this class include hydrocodone (e.g., Vicodin), oxycodone (e.g., OxyContin, Percocet), morphine (e.g., Kadian, Avinza), codeine, and related drugs.