Opium Information

What Is Opium?

Opium is the crudest form and also the least potent of the Opiates. Opium is the milky latex fluid contained in the seedpod of the opium poppy (Papaver somniferum). The milky substance is harvested at a specific stage in the flower’s life. This dried form is typically smoked but can also be eaten. Opium is grown mainly in Myanmar (Burma) and Afghanistan. It is a depressant.

Today, it is sold on the street as a powder or dark brown solid and is smoked, eaten, or injected. Opium is highly addictive. Tolerance (the need for higher and higher doses to maintain the same effect) and physical and psychological dependence develop quickly.

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Opium History

Used as a folk medicine, taken with a beverage or swallowed as a solid, the use of opium goes as far back as 8,000 years ago. Only toward the middle of the 17th century, when smoking was introduced into China, did any serious opium addiction problems arise. In the 18th century, the situation got so serious in China that attempts were made to prohibit the drug. But the drug made its way to Europe and North America, where addiction grew out of its prevalent use as a painkiller.

Street Names

Aunti, Aunti Emma, Big O, O, Black pill, Chandu, Chinese Molasses, Dopium, Dream Gun, Fi-Do-Nie, Gee, Guma, Midnight Oil, Zero.

Opium poppy seed pod with latex.

The Effects of the Drug

The effects begin within 15 to 60 minutes of consumption and last for 4 to 6 hours. The intensity of opium’s euphoric effects depends on the dosage and how it is taken. It can be smoked, eaten, taken in pill form, or intravenously injected. Its “high” is similar to heroin. At first, one experiences a euphoric rush, then relaxation and relief of physical pain.

Physical Consequences are;
  • Constipation
  • dry mouth and mucus
  • upset stomach
  • stomach pain
  • vomiting
  • loss of appetite
  • dependency, and

Symptoms of Overdose

  • Slow breathing,
  • seizures,
  • dizziness,
  • weakness,
  • tiny pupils,
  • loss of consciousness,
  • coma, and possible death


Withdrawal Symptoms

  • restlessness and irritability
  • insomnia
  • depression and crying
  • sweating
  • restless sleep
  • muscle cramps
  • nausea and vomiting
  • fast heartbeat.


Opium Addiction & Smoking

In the 18th-century, opium smoking was popular mainly in China. The trade of the drug was a very important source of income for the colonial rulers. Although opium was readily available in Europe at the time, its use was not problematic.

Development into Other Drugs

Opium contains many different substances, and in the nineteenth century, chemists started isolating the various components. In 1806, Friedrich Serturner was the first to extract one of these substances in its pure form. He named it morphine after Morpheus, the Greek god of sleep. Codeine (Robiquet, 1832) and papaverine (Merck, 1848) followed. These pure substances supplanted the use of raw opium for medical purposes. Like the raw drug, they were frequently used as painkillers or to eliminate diarrhea. The invention of the hypodermic in the mid-nineteenth century leads to the widespread use of morphine intravenously as a painkiller.

In The USA

In the United States, opiate use rose greatly in the 20th-century. It occurred partly because of the opium-smoking Chinese immigrants and the wounded soldiers in the Civil War who got it intravenously. In addition, many patent medicines contained opium extract. Soon, morphine made its appearance as a “remedy” for opium addiction. Needless to say, morphine became the new drug of dependence.

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1 888-488-8434
Toll-free Number

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our form here.