In 2019, opioid-related drug overdoses took the lives of almost 50,000 Americans. Fentanyl – a powerful synthetic opioid – is part of this national crisis. These drugs not only take lives, but have a huge economic impact.
Many employers carry out on-the-job drug testing. This can identify whether employees are taking drugs, including fentanyl.
What exactly is fentanyl? What fentanyl effects can impact job performance? What are the side effects?
Let’s take a closer look at this drug, including fentanyl side effects.
What Is Fentanyl?
Fentanyl was developed as a prescription medication for people with serious illnesses, such as cancer. It is commonly administered to these patients using a skin patch, lozenges, or nasal spray.
What is fentanyl prescribed for apart from cancer? People may also receive a prescription for fentanyl if they have a condition causing short-term severe pain. This could include after surgery or sustaining a serious injury.
Even when under a doctor’s care, fentanyl can lead to dependence. This means that there will be some mild side effects if you stop taking it.
People can also become addicted to fentanyl. They will take risks to get it, and will experience withdrawal symptoms if they stop taking it.
Fentanyl on the Street
Although developed as a legitimate, prescription painkiller, fentanyl is now a favorite of drug dealers.
They may sell it under a variety of names including China Girl, Dance Fever, He-Man, and Apace. Some dealers mix it with heroin. Some people have unwittingly overdosed on fentanyl, believing they were taking heroin.
A fentanyl urine test can show up in minutes whether a person has fentanyl in their system.
What Are the Side Effects of Fentanyl?
Fentanyl can produce different side effects in different people. Fentanyl common side effects include:
- Feeling drowsy
- Feeling nauseous
- Breathing difficulties
- Feeling cold
The sedative effects of fentanyl may be very pronounced in some people. It can even lead to people becoming unconscious.
There are also some lesson common side-effects. If you experience any of the following, speak to your doctor:
- Skin discomfort – burning, prickling, itching, numbness
- Difficulty or pain passing urine
- Reduction in volume of urine
- Gaining weight quickly
- Racing heartbeat
- Stomach pain
- Facial swelling
These side effects are unpleasant but they may ease off as your body gets used to the medication.
Fentanyl side effects may also make it very difficult to work safely. Talk to your doctor about how safe it is for you to perform your current work while taking fentanyl.
Overdose of Fentanyl Symptoms
An overdose of fentanyl can be fatal. It’s important to recognize the signs and act quickly.
If you experience ANY of these symptoms, you should get emergency medical help:
- Unconsciousness, or so drowsy you cannot respond
- Slow heartbeat
- Severe breathing difficulties, including very slow breathing
- Cold skin that is clammy to the touch
- Very small pupils
Men, older people, and those with low socioeconomic status are at the highest risk of opioid overdose. There is no specific fentanyl overdose amount – it will vary from person to person. However, any use of fentanyl not supervised by a doctor is very dangerous.
The Construction Industry Fentanyl Overdose Epidemic
There is a relatively high rate of injuries among construction workers. Many workers have been prescribed fentanyl or other opioids to manage their pain. In some cases, this has led to construction workers developing an addiction to fentanyl.
This is more common in workers in smaller construction companies.
Impact of Fentanyl Side Effects in Construction
As we’ve seen, the side effects of fentanyl include drowsiness, confusion, and stiff muscles. Think about those fentanyl effects on a job site. It greatly increases the risk of injury to both the person taking fentanyl and other workers.
Workers under the influence of fentanyl should not drive, at least when they start taking it. They can also be a danger when operating heavy machinery. Clearly, employers do not want workers using fentanyl on their job sites unless prescribed and monitored by a doctor.
How to Test for Fentanyl
To run a drug-free and safe workplace, it’s very important to test regularly for fentanyl abuse.
Those in the construction and mining industries should have heightened awareness of this issue. Both experience high rates of fentanyl abuse.
12PanelNow Fentanyl Testing Strips
Fentanyl test strips for sale from 12PanelNow are 99% accurate and yield a result within 5 minutes. They are also able to detect fentanyl in any liquid, not just in urine. Any substance suspected of being fentanyl can be combined with water and tested.
The bulk drug test price for fentanyl test strips starts from $0.59.
Fentanyl Drug Test Kit – FYL Cartridge
It can detect fentanyl in urine 2-3 days after using, and it is 99% accurate. This is an initial test – further tests should follow if there is a positive result.
This rapid drug test allows you to read results in 5 minutes. This makes it a very quick and easy option for busy workplaces.
13 Panel Drug Test Cup
At many worksites, it’s advantageous to test for a number of drugs at once. A 13-panel drug test cup is a fentanyl drug test but also tests for 12 other substances.
This costs as little as $2.49, or less with a 12PanelNow coupon!
Keep Your Business Safe from Fentanyl Side Effects
Workers can take fentanyl legally under a doctor’s supervision. But fentanyl side effects can still make them a liability at work. Regular drug testing lowers the risk of things going wrong.
Keep your workplace safe without paying a fortune. 12PanelNow.com supplies drug tests in bulk at low prices.
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Contact us today for more information on how we can serve your business.