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National Crisis Helpline: 1-800-662-4357
OxyContin is a form of the opioid painkiller oxycodone. OxyContin is one of the most popular brand named opioids and is commonly prescribed by to patients by physicians for pain management and chronic pain. However, the drug is also unfortunately abused resulting in OxyContin addiction, a leading cause of death in the United States. People who misuse the drug do so to achieve a high similar to that of heroin - a euphoric pleasurable sensation occurs when using this form of oxycodone.
The opiate oxycodone is most commonly found in the name brand drugs Percocet and OxyContin. OxyContin usually comes in the form of extended-release tablets, which means that its effects can last up to 12 hours as opposed to other versions of opioids that are meant for short term pain. OxyContin was first made in the United States in 1916, but came to popularity in the 1970s when it became a favorite choice of doctors to prescribe to patients suffering from severe pain or pain related to surgeries and injuries. It is a Schedule II controlled substance, which means that while it is a legal drug when prescribed, it is incredibly addicting if people abuse it or administer it incorrectly against the doctor’s orders. Often, misuse of prescribed OxyContin can lead users who no longer have access to a prescription to develop a heroin addiction. While it can be a helpful drug when used properly, oxycontin abuse is a major threat to those taking it.
If OxyContin is used as a medication prescribed by a professional in a controlled environment, it can be an effective form of pain relief. To avoid oxycodone addiction, people should take it exactly how their physicians direct them to. Generally, OxyContin tablets are taken orally. However, those who abuse the drug often crush and snort the drug, which can increase its effects quicker and more intensely, making it easier to abuse and become addicted. The dose used should be dictated by a professional who knows your condition and how best to treat it, and is usually taken every 12 hours. If you are unsure of how much to take and how often, consult your healthcare professional.
The opioid problem in the United States has become a national epidemic. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there were 42,429 opioid deaths in the United States in 2016, which averages to 115 deaths per day due to prescription opioids like OxyContin. It is an epidemic that doesn’t only affect adults, but teens as well, with 1 in 20 teens saying they have taken OxyContin without a prescription. The drug has only increased in popularity over the years, with prescriptions and abuse increasing tenfold over the years, especially in the United States. While the US has only 5% of the world’s population, they consume 80% of the world’s opioid pills.
Addiction to pain pills derived from oxycodone is a serious issue in America, one that continues to take the lives of many people around the country, and the world. There are many ways that people who abuse OxyContin can find help, including treatment that utilizes detox and drug rehab programs, including the powerful approach to opiate addiction that we provide at Nulife.
Because such high doses of OxyContin are needed to achieve a desired high by users, overdose is an unfortunate reality for people using the drug. Those who continually abuse the drug will need more and more over time to achieve the same high once they’ve developed a tolerance, which can also result in an unexpected overdose. An OxyContin overdose slows down a users central nervous system, causing their breathing and heart rate to slow down substantially, often bringing them into a coma or lack of breath altogether. Symptoms of an oxycodone overdose include:
Often, an overdose can be fatal if the user does not receive immediate medical attention. To avoid overdose, only use OxyContin when prescribed by a physician, and never take more than is advised. If you, someone you know or family members are experiencing an overdose, call 911 or the National Opioid Crisis helpline immediately: 1-800-662-4357.
There are a variety of dangerous short and long term effects that OxyContin users may develop. If prescribed correctly, OxyContin is an appropriate treatment for pain. The drug interacts with opioid receptors in the brain and provides a rush of dopamine, creating pleasurable sensations throughout the body and pain relief. However, oxycodone is highly addictive and over time the body will start to rely on the drug, forcing the body to establish a tolerance and create the need to continually use and abuse the proper dosage.
The short-term side effects from OxyContin include:
However, there are also negative short-term side effects that can occur, including:
Long term side effects of OxyContin are serious and long term use of the drug should be regulated and discussed with your doctor, especially if the effects become unmanageable. These long-term effects include:
Signs of Oxycontin addiction and dependency are apparent when the user stops taking or is unable to consume the drug, thus resulting in opioid withdrawal symptoms. Because a tolerance has been established, a user who hasn’t taken the drug as regularly as their body expects can develop certain unpleasant symptoms of withdrawal that leaves the user feeling may uncomfortable feelings in their body and mind. These symptoms are often felt in the detox phase of treatment, and can begin 24 hours of the last time the drug was taken and last 1-2 weeks. Here are the most common withdrawal symptoms people should watch out for during withdrawal from OxyContin.
Although a user’s body will be going through a big transition that isn’t an easy one, there are programs, treatments and people who will help you find peace and start to begin your new life in recovery.
OxyContin users who want to end their addiction have many options when it comes to seeking help, and long term recovery is possible. It is recommended that you seek the help of professionals when dealing with an oxycodone addiction who will ease you through your detox phase and help you find the right tools to live life free of addiction. Rehab centers like NuLife will find the individual path that fits your recovery by administering the proper treatment and take care of you during your time of need.
If you have an OxyContin dependence, here are the treatment options available:
There are also a variety of medications that can ease the withdrawal symptoms people experience when going through detox. Sometimes, these medications are administered to help taper the effects of withdrawal instead of having a person quit “cold turkey”. These medications should only be taken when prescribed by a medical professional, and can include methadone, buprenorphine, clonidine, or naloxone. Each of these drugs works to reduce certain withdrawal symptoms and helps a person’s body heal.
There is hope. If you or a loved one is suffering from an OxyContin addiction, call now and take back control of your life.