OxyContin, oxycodone hydrochloride, is a drug that has become one of the most commonly abused prescription drugs in the United State. Though prescribed as a controlled-release medication used to treat chronic pain, it is commonly abused and can cause serious health risks. What is OxyContin and why is it so commonly abused?
What is OxyContin?
OxyContin is a brand name for the drug oxycodone hydrochloride. OxyContin is a narcotic analgesic. It is a controlled-release version of the drug oxycodone, a derivative of opium. Oxycodone is a Schedule II controlled substance. It is prescribed to treat serious and chronic pain. Patients with serious injuries, arthritis and cancer are often prescribed this drug due to its time-release formula, providing relief from pain for up to 12 hours.
The major health benefit of OxyContin is its ability to control pain for up to 12 hours. This provides relief for patients with chronic pain without having to take pain medication throughout the day. Unfortunately, despite the many health benefits, OxyContin has a risk of abuse and addiction.
Effects and Dangers of OxyContin
When used as prescribed, OxyContin manages chronic pain for up to 12 hours. The most common side effects seen with OxyContin use are: euphoria, pain relief, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, headache, lethargy, dizziness, dry mouth, sweating, confusion and itching. Side effects that require you to contact your doctor are: shallow breathing, slow heartbeat, seizures, severe weakness and confusion.
When abused, the health risks associated with the drug increase. Some physical signs and symptoms of OxyContin abuse are: euphoria, depression, mood swings, anxiety, irritability, “nodding out”, constipation, dizziness, headache, sweating, itching, dry mouth, pupillary constriction and respiratory depression. Some behavior signs and symptoms of OxyContin abuse are: taking more than prescribed, alternative routes of administration (crushing tablet, snorting, smoking, injecting), doctor shopping, losing prescriptions, track marks, extreme drowsiness, financial issues, change in overall demeanor, and difficulties maintain responsibilities and personal relationships. Abuse of OxyContin can lead to dependence, addiction, unintentional overdose, coma and even death.
Getting Help for OxyContin Addiction
OxyContin is commonly abused, especially as an alternative to illegal opiates. The health risks associated with OxyContin abuse are serious and can be life threatening. It is imperative that if you are concerned about yourself or a loved one you seek help. If you or someone you know needs help from OxyContin addiction, do not hesitate to contact us at (888)357-7577.