Most supervisors know that they are not supposed to be experts on the signs and symptoms of each type of drug of abuse, but some drugs of abuse are so deadly and destructive, in addition to have plenty of adverse effects on the workplace, that it is worth give DOT supervisors a bit more information about the most serious substances so they are well-armed in the fight for a drug free workplace.
One of these tremendously impactful substances is Heroin, and the man derivatives of it and other deadly opioids like Fentanyl. It might even be worth having a separate DOT reasonable suspicion training module on Fentanyl or Heroin to help managers have better drug and alcohol awareness so they can act on reasonable suspicion.
Consider the following information as a supplement to your DOT supervisor training, but have added this material to course 155 at WorkExcel.com.
Opioids are a tricky group of substances. If the addict can use the right amount, and the right time, and in the right way, it is possible for the supervisor overseeing DOT employees since heroin gets so much attention, it might be valuable to know what the symptoms of its use actually are.
Immediate signs of heroin use that might be experienced after dosing may include vomiting, nausea, itchy skin, and dry mouth.
Although such symptoms alone do not demonstrate heroin use, other symptoms may include the following as the body of the user becomes more affected: sleepiness, drowsy appearance, foggy or confused state, and slow breathing.
Employees who are long-term users may have unexplained skin irritations, abscesses, or infections along with needle marks or bruising. Heroin users typically have severe withdrawal symptoms, and rather than symptoms of use, these withdrawal symptoms are often spotted by supervisors or coworkers: agitation, shakes and cold sweats, bone and muscular pain, vomiting, diarrhea, and nausea. Heroin users may look physically well, engaged, and very communicative.
Their lifestyle, however, requires that they learn how to deceive, put on a positive appearance, and lie to those who oversee their work in order to avoid confrontation and detection of their drug use problem.