Opium is a narcotic in the class of opiates. Opiates are derived from opium. Opium is made from the immature pods of opium poppies. The sap that comes out of the pods is what is used. It can contain up to 12% morphine which can be used to produce heroin. The sap also contain codeine. Both morpine and codeine relieve pain which is one of the effects on the human body. For this reason both have been used medical prodcedures to relieve pain. Other effects of Opium are it can cause euphoria, followed by a sense of well-being and a calm drowsiness or sedation. Breathing slows, potentially to the point of unconsciousness and death with large doses.

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Opium. Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Opium
Effects of Opium. Drug Free America http://www.drugfree.org/Portal/Drug_guide/Opium