According to Harvard Medical School, “Since its introduction in 1995, OxyContin [the brand name of oxycodone] has become popular with abusers and addicts.” The drug is dangerous and is often stolen, diverted to the illicit market, and then “dissolved in water for snorting or injection.” If you have been abusing oxycodone and become addicted to the drug, it is important to seek treatment as soon as possible.
The Severity of Oxycodone Addiction
The Center for Substance Abuse Research states, “Oxycodone… has many similarities to other drugs of abuse, including alcohol, heroin, and marijuana, in that they elevate levels of dopamine, the neurotransmitter linked with pleasure experiences.” They also can all cause dependency, tolerance, drug-seeking behavior, compulsive use, and physical and psychological side effects. When abused, oxycodone can cause dangerous side effects for the person who uses it and serious problems in the life of the individual, which still will not deter the person’s abuse if they become addicted.
Oxycodone addiction can be just as severe and dangerous as any other addiction syndrome, and anyone who is experiencing issues with this drug should seek help as soon as possible.
How is Oxycodone Addiction Treated?
Oxycodone addiction is treated much in the same way as heroin and other types of prescription opiate addictions are treated. The drug comes from the same general origin, specifically from the natural substance thebaine that exists in the poppy plant, and has the same general makeup. Therefore, treatment is basically the same as well.
A patient will usually be given a medication to help minimize withdrawal symptoms and cravings and to reestablish normal brain functions. Some of the medications commonly used include:
- Clonidine, an antihypertensive agent that can treat withdrawal but not addiction itself
- Methadone, an opioid agonist that treats both withdrawal and addiction by maintaining the individual and occupying the opioid receptors
- Buprenorphine, a partial opioid agonist that treats withdrawal and addiction and is usually prescribed with naloxone to guard against abuse
- Naltrexone, an opioid antagonist that treats addiction but will precipitate withdrawal in anyone who is still physically dependent on opioids
Therapy is usually an extremely important part of treatment, as it helps the patient recognize triggers and cravings for the drug, learn better coping mechanisms, and strategize for their future actions.
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy, a therapeutic program that helps patients change their behavior to make better decisions and create a better life
- Contingency management, a therapeutic program that uses rewards and vouchers to help patients avoid further drug abuse
- 12-step facilitation therapy, a therapeutic program that helps increase the likelihood that a person will attend a 12-step program for their drug abuse
Support groups like Narcotics Anonymous as well as couples and family therapy can be very beneficial to many individuals as well.
Seek Oxycodone Addiction Treatment Now
Because oxycodone addiction is similar to other opiate addiction syndromes, it is treated much in the same way as these are. Still, your treatment program should be tailored to your needs and reflect the best route of recovery for you. Call 800-442-6158 Who Answers? today to find the best treatment program for you.