Oxycodone addiction may feel like it has a tight grip on you, especially if you’re just at the initial stages of treatment. Whether you’re in the midst of rehab, or you’re just contemplating about seeking help, here are some things you need to know about recovery from oxycodone addiction.
Oxycodone Addiction and Recovery
Oxycodone is a type of opioid that is used to treat moderate to severe pain. With its powerful components to provide pain relief, it also brings about pleasurable side effects that can cause a substance-seeking behavior. No wonder, oxycodone comprises a large fraction of people addicted to opioids. Approximately 1.7 million people in the United States are diagnosed annually with substance use disorders related to pain reliever opioids such as oxycodone.
With people who want to seek oxycodone addiction treatment, the idea of recovery may seem like a faraway concept. However, anybody can recover from any kind of substance addiction, as long as they follow the right strategies in getting high-quality treatment options. In this post, we will explore more about the nature of oxycodone and how one fully recovers from addiction.
What Is The Chemistry Of Oxycodone?
Oxycontin, the brand name for oxycodone, is a type of semi-synthetic opioid that has an analgesic effect. Its molecular formula is C18H21NO4. This chemical composition is known to bind with the opioid mu-receptors in the Central Nervous System (CNS). This binding in the brain’s opioid receptors causes the release of neurotransmitters such as vasopressin, causing a lower level of brain activity.
With its chemical composition, oxycodone is considered a Schedule II controlled substance. This means that there is a high possibility that the drug can cause addiction when misused.
What Are The Side Effects Of Oxycodone Use?
The common intended use for oxycodone is for pain relief. People undergoing surgery, suffering from chronic fibromyalgia, injuries, or cancer treatment may be prescribed oxycodone to block out the receptors that signal pain. However, there are also side effects that can go along with taking this drug, whether used as prescribed or illicitly.
The side effects of oxycodone include the following:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Slower digestion and constipation
- Feeling limp
- Loss of energy
The slower brain activity caused by oxycodone causes the operations of vital organs to slow down, thus bringing these usual side effects.
How Was Oxycodone Intended To Be Used?
The proper use of oxycodone is often done by taking the right dosage orally or injected intramuscularly. There are two types of the drug on the oral route, one is a regular release, and one is extended-release.
The dosage of oxycodone differs per each case and patient. Depending on the severity of the condition, there may be higher or lower doses and frequencies of the drug. However, there’s a standard dosage presented in the package for severe pain:
- Adults: 9 mg every 12 hours with food. Your doctor adjusts your dosage during a certain period. Usually, dosages do not exceed 288 mg a day.
- Children: Dose should be determined by a physician.
As oxycodone is described to be a Schedule II controlled substance, it is important to use the drug only as instructed. Patients should not take more amount of increase in the frequency of taking oxycodone, as this increases the risk of oxycodone drug addiction and overdose. Oxycodone abuse is usually self-diagnosable, but there are some people who are in denial about the severity of their condition. If you or a loved one has a suspected case of oxycodone misuse, here are some signs you should watch out for: A sign that someone is developing an oxycodone use disorder is the challenges they face controlling the intake of the drug. They may find it difficult to scale back on drinking oxycodone, or they may hide the actual extent of their use to their loved ones. People who are developing an oxycodone addiction may feel uneasy and crave the drug when they can’t access it. They find it difficult to concentrate on other things when they don’t get their usual dose. As the individual develops an oxycodone tolerance, the physical side effects of using it will become more pronounced. They may experience constipation, increased nausea and vomiting, drowsiness, shallow breathing, and slurred speech. Oxycodone may be described as having anxiety, nausea, muscle pain, chills, sweating, and general discomfort when one stops or decreases use. It is important to consult medical help when experiencing withdrawals as they can cause life-threatening complications.
What Are The Signs Of The Illicit Use Of Oxycodone?
Difficulty controlling increased use
Intense cravings and general discontent
Pronounced side effects
Experiencing withdrawal symptoms
Oxycodone abuse is usually self-diagnosable, but there are some people who are in denial about the severity of their condition. If you or a loved one has a suspected case of oxycodone misuse, here are some signs you should watch out for:
A sign that someone is developing an oxycodone use disorder is the challenges they face controlling the intake of the drug. They may find it difficult to scale back on drinking oxycodone, or they may hide the actual extent of their use to their loved ones.
People who are developing an oxycodone addiction may feel uneasy and crave the drug when they can’t access it. They find it difficult to concentrate on other things when they don’t get their usual dose.
As the individual develops an oxycodone tolerance, the physical side effects of using it will become more pronounced. They may experience constipation, increased nausea and vomiting, drowsiness, shallow breathing, and slurred speech.
Oxycodone may be described as having anxiety, nausea, muscle pain, chills, sweating, and general discomfort when one stops or decreases use. It is important to consult medical help when experiencing withdrawals as they can cause life-threatening complications.
Detoxification And Treatment For Oxycodone
Now that we have fully covered and understood the nature of oxycodone, what are some strategies to achieve addiction recovery? If you’re wondering about the steps you can take towards sobriety, below is a complete guide that can help in the process of treatment:
- Contacting a trusted oxycodone rehab center: Not all rehabilitation centers are created equal. It is essential to get professional help from rehab centers catered to oxycodone addiction. Once you reach their hotlines, make sure to ask pertinent questions about insurance, treatment options, and what you need to do before signing up for rehab.
- Undergo treatment: After the necessary preparations in rehab for oxycodone addiction, you will undergo an assessment with various healthcare professionals to know the right kind of treatment proper for your needs. Usually, patients who have oxycodone addictions will undergo medical detox, which involves tapering off drug use or utilizing other drugs. After that, the actual rehabilitation proceeds, as the patient receives custom care. This can include 12-Step, Non-12 Step, Dual Diagnosis, and other treatment options.
- Aftercare instructions: After the 30-90-day rehab treatment, the patient receives aftercare instructions to aid in maintaining their sobriety. They will be given fitness and nutrition plans, continuing therapies, as well as plugging into local support groups.
Take The First Step Towards Recovery
Talk to a Intake Coordinator
Opioid addictions mostly involve the use of medications to help in reducing the symptoms of withdrawal and dependency. As opioid addiction commonly persists, it is important to dampen the strong effects of oxycodone by using other prescription drugs.
Commonly, patients who are recommended or prefer medication-assisted treatment will be given doses of naltrexone, methadone, or buprenorphine. These are agonistic or antagonistic drugs, which block the effects of opioids such as oxycodone when taken.
The goal of medication-assisted treatment is to allow the brain to reduce substance dependency, which lessens withdrawal symptoms and cravings for the drug. Once the patient is in a stable state, they can proceed to non-medication treatment such as counseling, psychotherapy, and other protocols for oxycodone rehab.
Finding Help: Opioid Recovery Is Possible
You don’t have to go through opioid addiction alone. When recovery seems like an illusion, know that there are concrete steps you can take to achieve complete sobriety. Help is within your reach–all it takes is to commit and take the first step. It takes courage and determination, but full addiction recovery is possible with professional assistance and the will to get better.
- Drugabuse.gov – “Opioid Overdose Crisis”.
- Pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov – “Oxycodone”.
- Mayoclinic.org – “Oxycodone (Oral Route) Side Effects”.
- Mayoclinic.org – “Oxycodone (Oral Route) Proper Use”.
- Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov – “Analysis of opioid efficacy, tolerance, addiction and dependence from cell culture to human”.
Sunshine Behavioral Health strives to help people who are facing substance abuse, addiction, mental health disorders, or a combination of these conditions. It does this by providing compassionate care and evidence-based content that addresses health, treatment, and recovery.
Licensed medical professionals review material we publish on our site. The material is not a substitute for qualified medical diagnoses, treatment, or advice. It should not be used to replace the suggestions of your personal physician or other health care professionals.
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