12 WWW.AGRM.ORG JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2018 Simply Put What are opioids anyway? Opioids are a class of drugs that help block pain. The term opioids can refer to prescription painkillers such as oxycodone, hydrocodone, or tramadol, as well as illegal drugs such as heroin. The Brain Connection People addicted to opioids face other troubling issues When a person is addicted to opiates, it’s rarely their only mental health problem. The majority of people with opioid addictions have a pre-existing mental illness or personality disorder (typically, half or more are affected), according to Fivethirtyeight. Common comorbidities include depression, anxiety disorders, post-traumatic stress disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, bipolar disorder, and antisocial personality disorder (more common in men) or borderline personality disorder (women). Some studies have found that the rates of these pre-existing problems among people with heroin addiction are as high as 93 percent. In addition, two-thirds have experienced at least one severe trauma during childhood, and among women with heroin addiction, rates of childhood sexual abuse alone can be that high or higher.