Opioids are drugs that are used primarily to treat pain, Opioids can also induce euphoria (feeling high) and are sometimes used for this purpose. Opioids can be prescribed medications dispensed from a pharmacy or obtained through the illicit market. Some commonly used opioids include: oxycodone (oxy), fentanyl, methadone, morphine, percocet, and heroin.
Opioid Overdose Risks
An overdose can happen when there is too much of a substance (or combination of substances) in the body. When someone overdoses on opioids, their breathing either slows or stops completely. This can lead to unconsciousness and even death.
You are at risk of an opioid overdose if you:
- take more than your prescribed dose of opioids
- take prescription opioids that were not prescribed to you
- take any unregulated substances (street drugs). There is a known toxic drug supply and many substances are unknowingly mixed with opioids or other substances
- take an opioid with alcohol or other depressant medications, including sleeping pills, anxiety medication, and muscle relaxants
Naloxone is a medication that can temporarily (i.e. for a short time) reverse or stop an opioid overdose. Naloxone can either be injected or given as a nasal spray. Please see the sections below for more information on how to access a free naloxone kit and training.
For Further Information
Workplaces can get more information from Ontario’s Naloxone in the workplace webpage.
Individuals may contact the Superior Points Harm Reduction program:
Phone: (807) 621-7861 or (807) 621-7862