In detail

Codeine: the fashionable opiate drug among rappers

Codeine: the fashionable opiate drug among rappers

The codeine It is one of those drugs that have been with us for a long time, but only in recent times has it become fashionable. And precisely, the rappers have done it. Today, we tell you everything you need to know about codeine.


  • 1 What exactly is codeine?
  • 2 Side effects and contraindications
  • 3 Recreational uses
  • 4 Rappers and codeine

What exactly is codeine?

Codeine is an alkaloid that can be found naturally in opium. That is, unlike others opioids Of those who have spoken on this website, codeine is not created in a laboratory, but is found in opium itself.

It is common to use it in medicine as an analgesic, sedative and cough suppressant (as you will see later, it is the presence in cough syrups that has most allowed its recreational abuse).

Codeine is assimilated in the liver, and, when metabolized, it becomes morphine. However, due to the low transformation speed it has, is considered (and is) less potent and effective as an analgesic and sedative than morphine itself.

In general, codeine tends to be used to treat moderate, less severe pain than those for which morphine is required. In addition, codeine is less addictive than morphine, and has fewer adverse effects.

Side effects and contraindications

Codeine, insofar as it is an analgesic of medium potency derived from opium, can generate a dependence similar to that generated by morphine, so its consumption, in principle, should only occur under medical prescription.

Of course, to the extent that it is a drug that acts on the nervous system and the brain, its potential is very high. In moderate doses it can generate a state of euphoria, but, in larger doses, it can cause a picture of respiratory depression.

Obviously, no opioid (codeine among them) should be consumed with other depressant substances Central Nervous System, such as antihistamines, the anxiolytics, alcohol or the different types of anesthetics that exist.

Recreational uses

Since its effects are very similar to those of opium or oral morphine, the recreational use of codeine has been taking place from the moment it was discovered. However, it was in recent times, following what we will see in the next section, It has become more popular and its use has become much more common.

In low doses, codeine is barely noticeable, although it can prevent coughing and reduce the feeling of pain a little (if any).

In medium doses it generates certain dizziness and a fairly clear analgesia. At high doses, the effect is basically the same as with morphine, only with a proportion difference of plus or minus 10% in dose and weight.

The effects occur after half an hour of ingesting the drug and remain active for about four hours, to gradually vanish as it falls into a state of sleep.

It is this dream state that is the most dangerous, because a picture of respiratory depression while he is sleeping (in fact, it is the most common cause of death when consuming codeine).

As it happens with others opiates, the consumption of a high dose of codeine, at first, is not pleasant for someone who is not used to this family of drugs. However, the repetition generates a positive assessment of the effects received, which, linked to the dependency it generates, it can lead to a strong addiction.

Rappers and codeine

Let's talk about rappers now, since we've mentioned them in the title. For more than a decade, it has been customary to see many rappers from the southern US consuming a drink called Syrup (syrup).

This Syrup was made by mixing certain soft drinks with cough syrup that contained codeine. And since its effects began to be observed, it became an element of the southern rap culture.

Naturally, as rap in the southern US has grown and become more popular, more has also become popular syrup consumption, both within the US itself, and outside its borders (although getting those syrups with codeine outside the US was much more complicated).

As an example of regular consumers we can mention Lil Wayne (a more famous rapper a few years ago) or 21 Savage (more popular today). We can also talk about Pimp C, which was found dead in 2007 due to a high intake of codeine, which produced a hypersomnia syndrome.

As you can see, the codeine it is not a drug plus. It is an especially powerful and can have really harmful effects for those who consume it. That is why it is convenient to be very careful, know it, and know how to consume it.