Dangers of Oxycodone Abuse
While prescription use of Oxycodone can help those with severe pain, Oxycodone abuse and addiction can develop in anyone who uses the drug. Any off-prescription use of Oxycodone is considered abuse, including use of the drug without a prescription, using more pills than prescribed for a single dose or taking Oxycodone more often than prescribed.
Many people start using Oxycodone as a prescription drug and slip unknowingly into abuse. Others try Oxycodone without a prescription at all, either getting it from the black market or using someone else’s prescription medication. Oxycodone is available under a few different brand names with different variant additives such as Oxycontin. Oxycontin differs from Oxycodone in that it is an extended-release formulation.
Oxycodone is both physically and psychologically addictive, which makes treatment a necessity. Users quickly develop tolerance to the drug, so the same amount has less of an effect over time. When this happens, some people try upping their dose or taking a second dose soon after the first. Without really being aware of it, the user quickly becomes an abuser and an addict.
Street Names for Oxycodone
Street names are commonly used when you are buying off the street. Some common street names are:
- Hillbilly Heroin
According to the US Department of Health and Human Services, about 11 million people in the US will consume at minimum of one dose of the drug in a non-medical way.
Using Oxycodone effects your motor functions and brain activity. You might experience feelings of relaxation and euphoria as well as a reduction in anxiety, but these pleasant sensations are accompanied by other, more dangerous effects. Some side effects of Oxycodone use include nausea, lightheadedness, constipation, dry mouth, dizziness, headaches, and mood swings. The sedating properties of Oxycodone make it dangerous to drive or operate machinery while you’re using the drug. If you drive or use heavy machinery while using you can hurt yourself or others. Oxycodone in high doses can also slow or stop your breathing, cause an irregular heart rhythm, or lead to seizures, all of which can be deadly. As a tolerance starts to build, you are more likely to see the more extreme effects.
Warning signs of Oxycodone abuse in a loved one
Sometimes it can be hard to tell when a friend or loved one is abusing Oxycodone. It is a possibility that your loved one doesn’t even realize it. The line between use and abuse is not always that clear. This could be because the use started with a legitimate prescription or maybe to self-medicate for pain. Regardless of how it started there are somethings you can look for in a loved one’s behavior to help determine if there is a possible addiction.
One sign that is fairly easy to notice is your loved one not being able to stay awake. If the use has escalated you might see him or her nodding out or falling asleep seemly out of nowhere. Drowsiness and a general lack of energy will most likely be seen as well.
Oxycodone can be rough on the stomach, causing an abuser to be nauseous, sometimes to the point of vomiting. This can also affect the person’s apatite, either over eating to counter balance taking pills on an empty stomach, or not eating due to the nausea.
Other things might not be as easy to spot such as headaches or dry mouth. The best way to know for sure, is to talk to your loved one. Not everyone will be honest, but reaching out in a caring way, not from a judgmental place, might give your loved one the opportunity to come clean about his or her addiction.
Factual Dangers: Oxycodone
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True Stories of Addiction: Ian’s True Story
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Oxycodone Rehab Treatment
Making the decision to go into Oxycodone rehab can be frightening, but pursuing treatment is the only way to ensure long-term recovery. During treatment for Oxycodone abuse and addiction, you get professional help while going through the detoxification process and learning how to live without prescription drugs.
Through a combination of therapy and life skills lessons, you address the issues behind your drug use. Rehab counselors also teach you how to identify and deal with triggers that lead to drug use so you can reintegrate back into society once you have completed Oxycodone treatment. Oxycodone addiction and abuse are difficult to break free from when you’re on your own. Rehab programs are specifically designed to handle the unique needs of recovering addicts so you have the best possible chance of long-term success.
One thing that is especially important for individuals who started using Oxycodone to control pain is learning new methods of pain relief that don’t involve painkillers. People who have a psychological addiction to Oxycodone due to its anxiety-reducing properties might benefit from learning other methods to control anxiety. A good rehab program treats the whole person by teaching techniques like these in addition to dealing with the Oxycodone dependency. Make the choice to take control of your life back and kick your Oxycodone addiction. – Learn More
Oxycodone detox involves the complete removal of the drug from your system. Because opiates are so powerful, withdrawal symptoms can be severe. Most people who try home detox treatment succumb to the temptation to take a dose of Oxycodone to ease the intense withdrawal symptoms.
Detoxing in a rehab facility gives you the support you need for a successful withdrawal. With professional care, you can get through the symptoms as comfortably as possible. You are supervised the entire time, and you can ask for and receive help whenever you need it, even in the middle of the night. The setting is designed to be calming, so you don’t get distracted or disturbed while you work through withdrawal. Having trained therapists on call also helps you get through the stress of detox.
In the United States, approximately 100,000 men and women are admitted to hospitals for the misuse of painkillers, such as oxycodone.
Medically-assisted detox from Oxycodone is an option for some recovering addicts. During medically-assisted detox, a doctor helps you gradually taper off the amount of Oxycodone you’re taking under strict supervision. This can reduce the severity of withdrawal symptoms, although it doesn’t get rid of the effects completely. Once Oxycodone is completely out of your system, you’re already at the facility where the rest of your recovery takes place. This means that the transition from detox to rehabilitation goes smoothly and the therapists and doctors know exactly where you are in your recovery journey. – Learn More
Addiction to Oxycodone
Oxycodone addiction is a disease, not a failure of willpower or personal weakness. People from all walks of life can get hooked on Oxycodone. Addiction often develops unexpectedly in individuals who were initially using prescription opioids to treat pain. Addiction to Oxycodone develops because the drug binds to opioid receptors in the brain to cause feelings of well-being and pleasure. Your brain eventually becomes dependent on the drug to get those pleasurable feelings. You didn’t choose to become addicted. The addictive properties of Oxycodone changed your brain to make breaking free extremely hard.
Opioids are commonly prescribed for pain, so many people don’t think about the addiction risk when receiving a prescription from a doctor. Sometimes you’re just glad to get relief from the intense pain. Getting a specific prescription for a medication also makes people think of that drug as something safe, so most people don’t think it could be dangerous until it’s too late.
Willpower alone can’t free you from addiction. Checking into rehab and getting help for Oxycodone abuse and addiction is the best way to return to a normal, drug-free life. We can help you reduce your dependence on Oxycodone without committing you to a future of joint or muscle pain. The process requires your cooperation, but the tools to eliminate your addiction to Oxycodone are within your reach. – Learn More
Dependency on Oxycodone develops when you have a physical need for the drug. The more you use Oxycodone, the more you need to use it. The pleasurable effects feel less strong over time, so you need to take more to get relief from pain or achieve a euphoric high.
Your brain’s reaction to natural feel-good chemicals produced by the body gets weaker as your dependency grows. Your brain produces fewer feel-good chemicals because Oxycodone is already filling the pleasure receptors. The entire wiring of your brain’s pleasure center has been taken over by your addiction, and the drug creates a vicious cycle that is hard to break. The more Oxycodone you take, the more your brain craves it, and the less your brain can supply the natural pleasure chemicals to keep everything under control.
When you’re dependent on Oxycodone, stopping causes intense withdrawal symptoms. The brain can’t quickly adapt back to producing endorphins and other natural pleasure-inducing chemicals, so you experience physical and psychological symptoms as the Oxycodone leaves your body. At this point, you need supervised detox and treatment to help your brain and body recover from dependency. Oxycodone dependency can also cause you to do things you would not have considered before. Because the cravings are so strong, you might abandon your moral principles not to steal or do other illegal things to get money for drugs. – Learn More
Seeking help for a loved one.
- How Do Oxycodone Interventions Work?
There will be a gathering of family and friends in a safe environment who have prepared a speech to say to their Oxycodone addicted loved one and will often be led by an interventionist.
- When Is a Oxycodone Intervention Necessary?
If your loved one is losing quality of life due to Oxycodone abuse, you may want to plan an intervention.
Intervention for Oxycodone Abuse
If someone you care about is addicted to Oxycodone, there are things you can do to help. Staging an intervention and confronting your loved one about Oxycodone abuse and addiction can be scary. However, your care and concern could be the thing that makes your loved one finally face the horrors of addiction and commit to treatment. Take the opportunity to show exactly how addiction impacts relationships and present options for treatment to help your loved one understand that there is a way to break the cycle of drug use.
Even if your friend or family member refuses to listen, that doesn’t mean the intervention has failed. Sometimes it takes time for a person to recognize the need for professional treatment. Your intervention could plant the seed that develops over time into a desire to recover. At minimum, it can break through any denial your loved one has and force recognition of a problem. Choosing to get help is up to the person addicted to Oxycodone, but family and friends have a lot of power when it comes to making an addicted person face the reality of addiction. Banding together with others to stage the intervention can show the addicted person that the addictive behavior hurts multiple people.
One important part of staging a successful intervention with an opiate addicted person is having all the information you need to guide your loved one into a rehab program. We can help you decide how to approach your addicted friend or family member in a caring, effective way. Call us to find out more about how to stage an intervention for Oxycodone abuse and addiction. – Learn More
Recovery from Oxycodone Abuse
When you’re ready to make the leap into a drug-free life, the first step is to find a rehab program that fits your needs. Recovery isn’t a quick or easy process, but a life free of Oxycodone addiction is well worth the effort. The symptoms of withdrawal also change over time as your body and brain adjust. Therefore, professionals recommend supervised detox and withdrawal in a facility equipped to deal with individuals experiencing severe withdrawal symptoms. Doctors, nurses, and therapists who are used to helping clients through detoxification can give you tips and assistance that you couldn’t get attempting detox at home alone.
An oxycodone addiction might also be an attempt to “numb” emotional pain caused from psychological trauma, feelings of anxiety or depression, or instances of abuse.
While in rehab for Oxycodone addiction, you have access to professionals trained specifically in dealing with addiction recovery. You also develop friendships with other people going through the same process and build a support structure that can serve as a foundation for long-term success. Rehab programs are also designed to keep you active and engaged, so you spend your time in a rehab facility focused on your treatment.
Regular meetings with others in the recovery community help keep you accountable once you’re out of rehab, and they help you stay aware of the fact that you’re not alone in your journey. Even if you relapse, that doesn’t mean you’re doomed to a life of addiction. Your support group and peers in recovery can help you get back on track. Learning about your options for Oxycodone addiction treatment is the first step toward becoming drug-free. Contact us to find out about rehab programs that suit your specific needs.
- How Do I Recover from Oxycodone Addiction?
There are many ways to recover from Oxycodone but it is recommended to get into an inpatient treatment center and work a 12-step program.
- Is Oxycodone Recovery Worth It?
Oxycodone addiction can and will destroy your life. Recovery is always worth it.
Dangers of Oxycodone Overdose
As tolerance develops to Oxycodone, your need to take increasingly more of the drug making an overdose more likely. Higher doses raise the risk of deadly consequences.
The drowsiness and sedation that come with overdoing Oxycodone make it hard to get help even if you realize what is happening. More likely, you won’t even notice as your body shuts down. People experiencing an Oxycodone overdose might experience extreme drowsiness, muscle weakness, clammy skin, mental confusion, constricted pupils, a slowed heart rate, shallow breathing, or fainting. If you notice any of these signs, immediate medical attention is needed to prevent death. Emergency responders typically carry a medication called naloxone that can halt or reverse an opiate overdose.
Some circumstances make overdoses even more likely. Taking Oxycodone and alcohol together is especially dangerous. Both substances can affect your breathing and heart rate, so combining them can tip you over the edge into a coma or halt your breathing entirely. Many Oxycodone users accidentally overdose during a relapse. Their bodies can’t handle as much anymore. Taking what was once a normal dose of Oxycodone can be too much for someone who has been away from the drug for a while.
Prescription Oxycodone pills are time-release drugs, so they deliver the medication into your system slowly. Crushing the pills destroys the time-release effect, so the full potency of the opioid hits your system at once. Oxycodone abusers who crush the tablets get that same dose in just a few minutes. This gives a more intense high, but it also increases the risk of an overdose. – Learn More
Oxycodone Use, Abuse, and Dependency
The prescription opioid drug Oxycodone has legitimate uses, which makes determining the difference between use, abuse and dependency a bit complicated. In general, if an individual is using Oxycodone exactly as prescribed to treat a specific medical condition, such as pain after surgery, then the use is legitimate. Any use other than that is abuse, and if the user develops a physical addiction to Oxycodone, that is dependency. Common ways that people abuse Oxycodone include taking extra pills instead of just one at a time, acquiring more Oxycodone from illicit sources to use once the initial prescription runs out, and crushing the pills to get the drug into the bloodstream more quickly.
Sometimes the line blurs and a person develops a dependency during normal prescribed use. This often leads to abuse and addiction because you can develop withdrawal symptoms when your prescription ends, but you can be dependent on Oxycodone without being addicted. A doctor can help you wean off prescription Oxycodone to try to safely get you back to functioning without the drug. If this process fails, you might end up an addict. The sheer availability of opioid prescription drugs on the black market makes it easy to obtain extra Oxycodone once your prescription runs out. Forged prescriptions can sometimes fool a pharmacist into releasing more of the drug than originally prescribed.
If you’re dependent on Oxycodone, your body reacts poorly to being without the drug. Withdrawal symptoms include anxiety, muscle aches, insomnia, nausea, vomiting, cramps, agitation, and sweating. These symptoms are extremely unpleasant, but they aren’t deadly. The discomfort is so strong that most people trying to quit end up going back on Oxycodone to make the symptoms stop. A single dose of Oxycodone quickly halts withdrawal symptoms. Some people also start using again because the initial pain they were treating with Oxycodone comes back.
Tolerance also develops during dependency. As your body becomes more tolerant of Oxycodone, the drug loses its effect. Moderate doses don’t seem to work anymore, so you need to take more Oxycodone than previously. You might experience a resurgence of the pain your original prescription was supposed to treat. The high you used to feel may not be as pronounced anymore. At this point, many abusers start upping their doses or attempting to obtain more Oxycodone than their prescriptions allow.
Oxycodone abuse is a growing problem across America. In 2012, about 2.1 million people in the US used prescription opioids in a way that is considered drug abuse. Oxycodone has similar effects to other opioid drugs, such as heroin and morphine. Some users stick with Oxycodone exclusively, while others switch between different types of opioids. Prescription Oxycodone comes in a tablet form, but abusers sometimes crush the tablets and snort them or mix the powdered tablets with water and inject the liquid for a faster, more intense hit. The extremely addictive nature of opioid drugs means that Oxycodone abuse frequently becomes physical dependency and addiction rather quickly.
Taking Oxycodone in excess can lead to serious health problems, up to and including death. Relationships, work, and school suffer when you’re addicted to Oxycodone. Once you’re addicted to Oxycodone, you crave the drug so much that you can’t resist it even knowing the risks. Some people take even more risks just to get the drug. Stealing other people’s medication or forging prescriptions can land you in legal trouble, but you might feel unable to stop yourself. You might hide evidence of your Oxycodone use from friends and family members out of embarrassment or to prevent them from taking away your drugs. Getting more Oxycodone becomes the focus of your everyday existence, and other commitments fall to the wayside. You might combine Oxycodone use with other drugs or switch between Oxycodone and heroin depending on which drug is easier to get at a given time. Poor decision making is a sign that your use of prescription opioids is out of control.
Addiction to Oxycodone isn’t just about physical cravings, although the biological changes that take place in the brain are a big part. There’s also a psychological component to Oxycodone addiction. You might be afraid that stopping the drug means you can never be free of the pain that the initial prescription was designed to treat. You might be nervous about going through withdrawal if you stop. Some users crave the relaxing sensation Oxycodone brings, while others like the way it reduces anxiety. These deep psychological effects must be treated along with the physical dependency for recovery to take place. The reasons you became addicted to Oxycodone are as important as the fact that your body is dependent on opioids.
Whether you developed addiction because of illicit drug use or after a period of prescribed Oxycodone use, recovery is difficult without the help of caring professionals trained in addiction treatment. Seeking help isn’t an admission of weakness on your part. Some people are ashamed or self-conscious about overuse and dependence on a prescription drug, but the truth is that prescription Oxycodone addiction can happen to anyone. Fortunately, help is available for those who want it. No matter how long you’ve been using Oxycodone, recovery is a possibility.
- What Are Some Common Short-term Effects of Oxycodone Abuse?
Oxycodone presents many negative side-effects including anxiety, sleepiness, confusion and memory loss.
- How Do I Prevent Myself from Having Short-term Effects from Oxycodone?
If you are addicted to Oxycodone, the only way to prevent side effects is to stop abusing the medication. If you are prescribed the medication, talk to your doctor about going on a lower dosage.
The short-term effects of Oxycodone develop quickly after you take the drug. A strong feeling of euphoria and pleasure occurs when the Oxycodone molecules attach to the opioid receptors in your brain. Pain reduction occurs quickly in individuals with severe pain. For some people with extreme pain, the euphoric feeling doesn’t occur as strongly.
This may be because the pain reduction effect is taking the place of the euphoria.
Beyond the pleasurable feelings and pain relief, Oxycodone also has other short-term effects. You might feel sedated or experience slowed breathing after taking Oxycodone. Your pupils may constrict and you might experience constipation. Coughs are suppressed after you use Oxycodone. If you take too much Oxycodone and overdose on the drug, you can have seizures, go into a coma, or die. Clammy skin, sweating, nausea, excessive drowsiness, muscle weakness and confusion are also symptomatic of an overdose.
Opioids such as Oxycodone also attach to receptors in your digestive tract, which can lead to unpleasant gastrointestinal symptoms. Excessive Oxycodone use can lead to diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting. Because the short-term effects are so dramatic, Oxycodone abuse and addiction are considered serious problems even if you haven’t been using the drug for very long. Every time you take Oxycodone, it’s a gamble as to whether you live through the encounter or not. Getting help to combat your addiction is essential because if you wait too long, you might die.
The biggest danger with long-term use of Oxycodone is that the risk of tolerance and dependency goes up the longer you use it. Your natural neurotransmitters involved with pleasure don’t work as well, leading to cravings for opioids that can fill those brain receptors. This makes it more likely that you will overdose, and it makes withdrawal symptoms more likely if you do try to quit. Some forms of Oxycodone also increase your risk of liver problems over the long term. In general, any use over a few weeks is considered long-term use, but if you’re using Oxycodone exactly as prescribed and are being monitored by a doctor, the risks of serious problems or death by overdose is greatly reduced.
The actual addiction is another long-term consequence of Oxycodone use. As your dependency on Oxycodone grows, addiction takes over your life. You start to think of nothing but when, where and how to get hold of more Oxycodone. The long-term impact of addiction doesn’t end with the physical and psychological impact it has on your life. Family, friends, colleagues, and neighbors can all be affected by your Oxycodone addiction. The longer the addiction and abuse of Oxycodone goes on, the harder it becomes to pick up the pieces of your life once you’ve recovered.
Long-term use of Oxycodone doesn’t mean you’re doomed to a lifetime of addiction. Even people who have developed a strong addiction and dependency on Oxycodone can go through rehab and successfully complete a recovery program. The higher your tolerance, the more difficult withdrawal is, so you need a supervised detox to get through the process of purging Oxycodone from your system.
- Will I have Life-Long Complications?
Oxycodone abuse can cause depression, which can lead to life-long complications.
- Does Oxycodone Addiction Harm More Than Just My Health?
A Oxycodone addiction can lead to financial trouble and destroy family and friend relationships.
True Stories of Addiction: Stephanie’s Story
Your loved one feels isolated and alone in their fight against their addiction. Give them the backup that they need. Holding an intervention for a loved one not only brings their problem to the surface, but shows them that people still care about them. They might be in denial with other people, but most people who have a substance abuse problem are not in denial with themselves. Deep down inside, they know they need help. If you show them that they have support if they decide to get that help, they will be more willing to go to rehab. Let them know that you are not giving up on them.
Seeking help for a loved one.
- Will Inpatient Treatment Help my Oxycodone Addiction?
Inpatient treatment is one of the most effective ways to recover from Oxycodone addiction.
- How Do I Choose an Inpatient Rehab for My Oxycodone Addiction?
Give us a call; we can help you find the Oxycodone rehab that will be prefect for you.
Inpatient Oxycodone Rehab
Take the time you need to focus on recovery with inpatient Oxycodone rehab. Checking into an inpatient rehab program gives you the best possible chance for recovery from Oxycodone addiction and abuse. An inpatient program might last a few weeks or a few months, depending on how severe your addiction is and how quickly you respond to treatment.
An inpatient facility provides room and board, so you don’t have to worry about where you sleep or what to eat while you’re in treatment. Trained counselors and staff keep you on track and help you address the underlying causes of your addiction so you can tackle them and move on with your life. Programs are personalized, so you get the specific things you need. If you have mental health conditions, chronic pain, or other substance abuse problems, you can get those things treated at the same time as your addiction. Family counseling helps you repair relationships with people you hurt while you were addicted to Oxycodone.
In an inpatient program, you get individual and group counseling to help you process your addiction patterns and learn new ways of dealing with the world that don’t involve taking a hit of Oxycodone. Being away from your everyday life prevents real-world triggers from tempting you into using drugs again. Meanwhile, you spend time at the inpatient facility learning how to resist those triggers, ensuring that you’re prepared to face the world drug-free once you leave rehab.Before entering an inpatient rehab program, you need to make arrangements with your job, school, and family to make sure everything back home gets taken care of while you’re away. It’s better to be prepared to focus entirely on rehabilitation and detox. – Learn More
If you need a rehab program that lets you stay at home while getting treatment, an outpatient program may be right for you. Outpatient programs are less intensive than inpatient programs, but they can still be effective. During an outpatient program, you live with your family but travel to the outpatient facility for treatment plan.
Outpatient programs can also serve as a continuation of what you started in an inpatient rehab facility. After release from inpatient rehab, outpatient therapy sessions and support groups help you maintain sobriety. If your program has an alumni support network, you get access to people who have already been through every aspect of rehab. Their knowledge about how to succeed at long-term recovery helps you stay strong in the face of temptations.
In some cases, outpatient programs can be difficult to stick with because the demands of everyday life are constantly pulling on you. Triggers and emotional connections to your Oxycodone abuse and addictive behaviors are continually present, so you might be more prone to relapses. Inpatient rehab is recommended as the first choice for a treatment program. If moving into a residential rehab facility for weeks or months possible for you, outpatient rehab programs might be an option to consider. Recovering Oxycodone addicts have been successful in both types of programs in the past, so you can rest assured that with effort you, too, can start on the road to a drug-free life. – Learn More
- Will Outpatient Help my Oxycodone Addiction?
Just like inpatient, if you are willing to do what it takes to recover, outpatient rehab will help you learn how to live your life without Oxycodone.
- When Should I go to Outpatient Rehab?
Following up your inpatient treatment with outpatient rehab can help provide you with a better chance at Oxycodone recovery.