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Table of Contents

Short Term Effects of Codeine

While codeine was first synthesized in 1832 by French chemist Pierre Robiquet, the popularity of this drug, and its subsequent abuse, did not truly take off until the past ten years. For this reason Codeine is unique among many opiates, as it always had a huge potential for abuse, but that abuse was never truly realized until recently.

One of the main reasons why codeine has become more popular is because of its inclusion in popular culture by various musical artists who rap or sing about the drug and use its imagery in their music videos. As tends to happen when famous musicians start to talk about something, the masses follow believing that using codeine is cool. But unfortunately many individuals have fallen into addiction over this line of thinking, and the unintended result was devastating to their lives.

While some people ask why drugs like codeine or other opiates are even used in the medical field, considering their abuse potential, it is important to understand that codeine and other such substances are incredibly effective in suppressing acute coughing and the pain that can come along with this. This puts these drugs in a precarious situation, where they are legitimately medically viability, but the destruction that their addiction causes many times outweighs this.

So if you are ever prescribed codeine and you believe that you have a predisposition to addiction, then you may want to discuss with your doctor about finding an alternative to this drug. Also if you are currently abusing codeine and you would like to stop, then please continue to read on so you can educate yourself about how to go about doing this.


Many of the short term effects of codeine are similar to that of other opiates, but there are a number of side effects that are not as pronounced among other members of its drug class.

One of the main short term effects of codeine that is not necessarily seen among other opiates is tremors. The tremors that are produced as one of the short term effects of codeine usage are similar to what occurs in Parkinson’s Disease and in fact 10% of individuals who seek treat treatment for Parkinson’s are actually suffering from Drug-Induced tremors. While this not one of the short term effects of codeine that is fairly common, it is a possible side effect that you can experience if you take the drug.

Another short term effect that many individuals who take codeine experience is labored breathing, which is a byproduct of many opiates. In this case codeine actually suppresses the respiratory system, which does help in extreme cases of coughing and other respiratory problems, but it can also produce medical complications that extremely dangerous.

For instance if an individual takes codeine and then experiences the drowsiness that comes as a side effect of the drug and they fall asleep while experiencing labored breathing, they could, as a result, suffer brain damage or even death. This is usually not something that people who are using codeine think about, but it is important to understand that when you use a power narcotic like codeine, especially if you are using it recreationally, that you are taking your life in your hands.

Some of the other common short term effects of codeine usage include:

  • Constipation
  • Rashes
  • Labored breathing
  • A reduction in heart rate
  • A drop in blood pressure
  • Altered consciousness
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Dysphoria
  • Confusion
  • Dry mouth
  • Vertigo
  • Indigestion
  • Hallucinations
  • Tremors
  • Depression
  • Urinary retention

It should be stated that you if are experiencing any of the short term effects listed above, you should seek immediate counsel with a medical professional. They will be able to direct you as to the correct course of action, and if you are suffering from addiction, they will be able to guide you in this process as well.


Dealing with the short term effects of codeine can be tremendously difficult, in particular if addiction is present. While some of these effects may be the desired result you are seeking out of codeine usage, it is important to understand that often times the euphoria produced and the “positive” short term effects will lessen as times goes on and the negative side effects will be amplified.

If you are a loved one of an individual contending with the effects of codeine, it can be equally as trying, as you have to watch your loved one become a totally different person, and watch them as they attempt to navigate their life while under the influence of a highly potent narcotic.

It is interesting because many times addicts believe that they are coping with the effects of a substance a lot better than the actually are, and while they believe that they are hiding their drug usage from those closest to them, often times everyone around them is aware of what is going on.

So whether you are a loved one of a codeine addict, or you yourself are suffering from codeine addiction, it is imperative that you seek professional help in order to overcome the issues associated with codeine abuse. For the family this may mean seeking out an interventionist so that so can attempt to get your loved one help, or it may mean attending Al-Anon meetings or private counseling. For the addict, this usually means attending a substance abuse treatment facility and 12 Step meetings.

However it is that you chose to deal with codeine addiction, it is important to remember how dangerous addiction can be, and how it should not be taken lightly or ignored. While it may seem like it is too much to contend with a loved one’s or your own addiction and still manage to meet the demands of everyday life, it is possible to do both, as long as the proper help is sought out.

So if you think that you or a loved one may have an issue with their codeine usage, please read the following section to learn how to get help for this problem. Please remember that you are not alone and that help is only a phone call away.


If you find that you cannot stop using codeine even though you would like to, then you may be suffering from codeine addiction. While you may be embarrassed by the fact that you cannot stop using drugs, it is important to understand that addiction is an actual recognizable disease and as such you’re inability to stop on your own should not be a cause for shame or guilt. It is estimated that 1 in 6 adults in the United States suffer from addiction, so you are not alone in your struggles, nor do you have to fight them by yourself. So if you are at the point where you would you like help overcoming your addiction, call us at 1-866-972-7714. We are standing by to provide you with the best treatment and recovery options, so that you can finally leave behind your old life of addiction and start new on the road to recovery. Call now!