Drug and Alcohol - Opioid Addiction

Demerol Addiction: What Does Demerol Abuse Look Like?

Demerol Addiction: What Does Demerol Abuse Look Like?

Demerol is a powerful opioid painkiller. It’s also a commonly abused drug. Learn more about Demerol abuse and Demerol addiction in our blog.

Written by

brian-mooreBrian Moore

Content Writer

Reviewed by

jeremy-arztJeremy Arzt

Chief Clinical Officer

Drug and Alcohol

Opioid Addiction

January 5, 2023

Demerol abuse is a form of substance abuse that is prevalent worldwide. This is an opioid prescription painkiller that is used to treat severe physical pain and inflammation. However, people often subject themselves to Demerol abuse for their euphoric effects. Prescription drug abuse is a very common gateway to drug addiction.

The short-term usage of Demerol heals the sensation of pain, but if a patient gets into a long-term practice of using this, it creates severe mental and physical problems. Here is a complete discussion of what Demerol abuse is and what are its triggers, causes, and treatments. Keep scrolling to know more.

What Does Demerol Abuse Look Like?

Demerol is a formulation of meperidine, a generic drug used as a pain reliever, and it is available in both liquid and tablet form. The primary function of this drug is to block the sensation of pain by giving a sense of pleasure. Hence, Demerol abuse and addiction demand an elaborative discussion.

Demerol Abuse and Addiction

Addiction is the final stage of substance abuse. When one starts getting habituated to the feeling of pleasure after taking Demerol, the person follows illicit ways to obtain Demerol. This is called Demerol abuse, and if it continues, it becomes a severe addiction.

Sometimes, people do not understand that they are subjecting themselves to Demerol abuse as they take it whenever they feel pain. Eventually, the body develops tolerance against these drugs, which soon turns into dependence. Demerol abuse causes not only physical issues but mental issues in an addicted person.

Triggers of Demerol Abuse

The common triggers for any substance abuse like Demerol or opioids are as follows:


  • Trigger: People suffering from acute stress and pressure can often start Demerol abuse for instant relief. Since opioid drugs like Demerol are prescribed by medical practitioners, people can get access easily and start using them as substances that relieve stress.

  • How to Avoid: Engaging in recreational and fun activities can help destress people. Besides, exercise and compassionate surroundings can also help.

Challenging Emotions

  • Triggers: Sometimes, people start Demerol abuse to handle emotional hurdles. Negative emotions such as extreme sadness, anger, or guilt are the triggers that people cannot always control. So, they indulge in this type of abuse.

  • How to Avoid: One needs to practice meditation, take counseling or speak to someone who can help to control emotional breakdowns and trauma.

Physical and Mental Illness

  • Triggers: Any sort of physical pain or mental instability can cause restlessness. Restless people are vulnerable to taking drugs that help them calm their nerves. Thus, physical and mental pain leads to Demerol abuse.

  • How to Avoid: One should be very careful while intaking opioid-infused drugs such as Demerol. Furthermore, to cure mental illness, one should visit a psychiatrist at the earliest.


  • Trigger: Staying in an environment where illicit drug practice is quite common can trigger Demerol abuse. This is because it is pervasive to get indulged when one continuously watches another person taking a drug and enjoying it.

  • How to Avoid: One should leave such an environment and ask for help from genuine caregivers.

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Symptoms of Demerol Abuse

The common signs of Demerol abuse are as follows:

Physical Signs

The physical signs include,

  • Nausea and vomiting

  • Constant itching

  • Heavy sweating

  • Disturbed sleeping schedule

  • Disorientation

  • Frequently nodding off

  • Slow and shallow breathing

Mental Signs

The psychological signs of Demerol abuse are as follows:

  • Engaging in risky deeds

  • Difficulties in relationship

  • Cognitive disorder

  • Getting into trouble in understanding legal things

  • Neglecting responsibilities

  • Becoming suspicious

  • Issues in understanding financial problems

Reasons for Demerol Abuse and Addiction

The reasons why people start Demerol abuse and develop addiction are as follows.

Euphoric Sensation

Demerol is an opioid drug that blocks brain cell receptors to numb the sensation of pain. Furthermore, it also enhances the secretion of happy hormones like dopamine that create euphoria. Thus, people enjoy this state and start abusing these medicines.

Increases Dependency

The excessive use of Demerol for pain relief makes people dependent on them. This is because the human body starts to develop tolerance to the drug. This leads to withdrawal symptoms when a person isn't using Demerol or other opioids. This pattern further leads to Demerol abuse and addiction.

Makes the Thoughts Numb

Overusing Demerol will capture one's thoughts and make them numb. Thus, some people start to get addicted to this medicine to escape from critical situations and responsibilities. So, in the long term, they enjoy being unaware of challenging situations where they need to think critically.

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Effects of Demerol Abuse

Demerol abuse has short-term and long-term effects. These are discussed below:

Short-Term Effects of Demerol Abuse

As short-term effects, Demerol reduces pain and creates a happy feeling. With continuous intake, it develops problems such as

  • Drowsiness

  • Low blood pressure

  • Pinpoint pupils

  • Constipation

  • Low body temperature

  • Confusion

Long-Term Effects

  • Long-term Demerol abuse can lead to the following effects:

  • Severe addiction

  • Hypoxia or an issue of inadequate oxygenated blood supply in tissues

  • Major psychological issues like depression and anxiety

  • Physical dependence

  • Brain damage

Treatment for Demerol Abuse & Demerol Addiction

Though Demerol is a highly addictive drug, treatment is available. However, the treatment is quite painful due to harsh withdrawal symptoms. Patients can get two types of treatment, medicinal and psychological. These are discussed below.

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Medicines for Treatment

There are 3 medicines for curing Demerol abuse. These are:

  • Methadone: This is a full agonist drug that activates receptors, reduces neurotransmitter secretion, and blocks the pleasurable feeling of the mind. It is quite a safe dose to treat withdrawal symptoms and decrease drug cravings. Under proper observation, Methadone can be used for a long time.

  • Buprenorphine: Buprenorphine is a relatively less impactful medicine and is a partial agonist. However, this is also used to treat drug cravings and helps lessen the effects of drugs.

  • Naltrexone: Naltrexone is an opioid antagonist that blocks the pleasurable feeling and helps to proceed toward abstinence. However, it does not activate the receptors.

Psychological Treatment

Drug abuse often happens with mental disorders, leading to co-occurring disorders. Thus one needs to opt for Demerol abuse treatment centers that provide dual diagnosis treatment facilities. Taking a dual diagnosis approach aims to cure drug abuse and its associated mental health problem. The help that dual diagnosis treatment can provide is as follows.

  • Ensures Recovery Rate: Dual diagnosis treatment is essential to achieve success in the treatment of Demerol abuse. This is because, under the effect of opioids, human brain cells fail to recognize right and wrong. As a result, at this time, they become reluctant to take medicines. So, Demerol abuse counseling can help in this situation and convince patients to continue the treatment.

  • Improves Physical Health: Untidiness and staying in unhygienic conditions are very common among people addicted to Demerol. Thus, they face severe health issues. Besides, continuous drug abuse causes other health problems in the short and long term. So, dual diagnosis also helps to rebuild this physical health by engaging them in healthy activities and making them take necessary nutrients.

  • Gives a Better Life: Dual diagnosis is not only important for treating Demerol addicts but also for giving them a better afterlife. As a part of this treatment method, patients indulge in different fun and adventurous activities and feel fresh and happy from the inside. Besides, in this treatment, experts also motivate patients to live sober life.

Demerol Withdrawal Symptoms

The main Demerol abuse problem is withdrawal from the addiction, which takes a heavy toll on the patients. This is because there are several withdrawal symptoms that lead to severe physical and mental ailments. These symptoms are as follows:

  • Insomnia

  • Anxiety

  • Restlessness

  • Agitation

  • Involuntary leg movements

  • Gastrointestinal issues

  • Runny nose

  • Dilated pupils

These withdrawal symptoms of opioid-infused drugs such as Demerol can last a minimum of 5 days and a maximum of 10 days. This period of time is considered crucial for both caregivers and patients. However, recovery from Demerol abuse is possible with proper monitoring, supportive care, and treatment.

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Demerol Overdose

Overview: Deaths due to drug overdose are a global threat. A steady rise in death has been seen in the last decade due to drug overdose. Thus, one should maintain all precautions possible for patients suffering from opioid abuse, so they do not end up in an unfortunate state.

Opioid Overdose Symptoms

The overdose symptoms that one may check for Demerol overdose in one’s loved ones are as follows:

  • Blurry vision

  • Cold and blue skin

  • Failure of respiratory system

  • Bradycardia

  • Loose muscles

  • Extreme fatigue

  • Coma

  • Fainting

How to Respond

If a friend or a family member shows these symptoms, they need immediate medical attention. The things one should do to help a patient in this situation are as follows:

  • Lightly tapping or shaking the patient to get a response

  • Applying sufficient pressure on the person's breastbone

  • Charging the necessary SOS medication for recovery

  • Conducting mouth-to-mouth respiration to aid the person to breathe

  • Perform CPR to get a response, if the above steps fail

  • Call emergency medical help immediately

  • Staying beside the patient and supporting them until medical help arrives

Demerol abuse and addiction to other opioids are highly harmful to health. The effects are adverse and may also cause death in critical conditions. However, visiting a rehab should be the immediate action whenever one starts to see opioid abuse symptoms in one’s loved ones. With proper help and medical care, one can get out of the situation and live a sober life.

Visit Edge Treatment Center for Comprehensive Treatment From Demerol Abuse

The Edge Treatment Center provides expert dual-diagnosis care for addiction. We have a holistic approach towards Demerol abuse, providing medication alongside support such as cognitive therapy, complete recovery of mental and physical health, social and spiritual well-being, behavioral therapy, and fun and adventurous group activities.

Demerol abuse and mental health are interconnected and receiving treatment for physical and mental health are essential for those struggling with co-occurring disorders. At The Edge Treatment Center, we make sure to do this through individualized treatment plans, evidence-based care, and building a sense of community.

Besides, our 360-degree approach will also help strengthen the bond between you and your loved ones. Demerol abuse recovery is complex but treatable. So don't deny yourself the right to a happier life. Contact The Edge Treatment Center today to learn more.

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If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, there is hope. Our team can guide you on your journey to recovery. Call us today.