An opiate is a drug that can suppress the perception of pain and calm a person's emotional response to pain by reducing the effect of pain signals sent by the nervous system. Opiates (also called opioids or narcotics) produce a feeling of well-being (euphoria) and cause mood changes, cloudy thinking, and deep sleep.
Side effects of opiates may include constipation and nausea. Frequent use of opiates may make a person dependent on them.
Commonly prescribed legal opiates include codeine and morphine. Opium is an example of an illegal opiate.
|Primary Medical Reviewer||Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine|
|Specialist Medical Reviewer||Nancy Greenwald, MD - Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation|
|Current as of||March 12, 2014|
WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise