Signs of codeine use can vary between individuals. Some people may have a higher tolerance to the to the opioid-based drug than others, making the outward physical, emotional and mental indicators of codeine use more prominent.

Simply put, a person can start their codeine use through an understandable need to suppress a sickness-related or allergy-induced cough. At this point, a doctor may prescribe 15 milligrams of codeine.

The problem is, if the cough persists, or is disregarded altogether due to the other euphoric-like feelings codeine can cause in a person, that person may feel a need to increase their dosage, say possibly to 30 milligrams, before the drug begins to take effect.

This is the usual occurrence with opiate painkillers; higher dosages are needed to combat the same sensation of discomfort and and/or pain. And of course, as we all know with opioids, the higher the dosage, the more likely a person is to become dependent on, then addicted to codeine, particularly after a long time period.

Several well-respected rehabilitation centers report that between the new and seasoned codeine abuser, there exists signs both share as a result of codeine use. Those signs can include:



  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Emotional numbing
  • Euphoria
  • Sense of well-being and calmness
  • Mood swings



  • Withdrawing socially from loved ones
  • Isolation from others
  • Forging prescriptions in order to obtain more codeine
  • Doctor shopping, which is visiting a series of doctors to obtain greater amounts of codeine
  • Frequent ER visits for vague complaints of pain
  • Stealing or borrowing codeine from friends and loved ones
  • Indifference toward loved ones, job, and social activities
  • Faking illnesses to obtain more codeine
  • Lying to hide the amount of codeine being abused
  • Sleepiness
  • Poor work or school performance
  • “Nodding off” during conversations



Codeine side effects operate in much the same way as codeine signs. The intensity of the side effects depends upon how long and how heavy a dose one user abuses in comparison to another user.

In cases of an allergic reaction to codeine, get emergency help as soon as possible. An allergic reaction could entail hives; difficulty breathing; swelling in the face, lips, tongue or throat.

Like other narcotic medicines, codeine can also slow a person’s breathing. Death may occur if one’s breathing becomes too weak.


  • Slow heart rate, weak pulse, fainting, shallow breathing
  • Feeling like you might pass out
  • Confusion, agitation, hallucinations, unusual thoughts or behavior
  • Feelings of extreme happiness or sadness
  • Seizure (convulsions)
  • Problems with urination
  • Infertility, missed menstrual periods;
  • Impotence, sexual problems, loss of interest in sex; or
  • Low cortisol levels – nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, dizziness, worsening tiredness or weakness.

A drug with side effects like those listed above, can’t be that safe during periods of misuse. Of particular alarm is the slowing of breathing which has the potential to lead to death. Be proactive when facing codeine addiction. The faster you identify a problem within a friend, loved one, or even yourself, try to get help as soon as possible.


If you feel you or a loved one has an issue with codeine, contact BLVD Treatment Centers. At BLVD Treatment Centers we custom tailor our recovery programs within the safe and nurturing confines of our rehab treatment centers. Located throughout California, in Los Angeles, Orange County, San Diego and in Portland, OR, our mission is to assess the severity of your addiction to help you achieve true recovery within 30 days. Call us now at 1-866.582.9844.

Codeine Side Effects.