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Hydrocodone, a semi-synthetic opiate, is a narcotic painkiller generally manufactured in conjunction with other pain medications such as acetaminophen. It is prescribed to treat illnesses such as back pain or chronic cough. Commercially Hydrocodone is prescribed under the generic names of Vicodin and Lortab. Many patients have found relief from Hydrocodone. Studies have shown that a person can become addicted to Hydrocodone after only one week of consumption. However, many prescriptions that are given to patients contain enough Hydrocodone for three weeks. Prescription painkiller addiction is a growing concern because of the increased availability and the addictive characteristics of narcotic painkillers.
Side Effects of Hydrocodone
One of the reasons Hydrocodone is so addictive is its side effects. Hydrocodone side effects are very similar to the side effects of Heroin because they are both opioid based painkillers.
Common Percocet side effects include:
* Dizziness, lightheadedness, or drowsiness
* Nausea and vomiting
Many have witnessed intense feelings of euphoria while on the drug, such as calmness during times that should invoke stress, sedation, and an increased level of happiness or well being. This is usually where the psychological dependency comes into play. Managing life without the level of calmness that Hydrocodone gives weight to the issues that individual experiences in their everyday life. When these symptoms occur, it usually indicates that the individual is no longer in need of the drug to subdue their pain. Instead of being used to subdue pain, the hydrocodone is becoming a substance that their body depends on.
Signs of Hydrocodone Addiction
The easiest way to identify a Hydrocodone addiction is if you experience certain symptoms after your prescription has been discontinued and symptoms or behaviors start to develop. If you feel the need to increase your dosage in order to feel normal, this also constitutes an addiction. Like any drug that can lead to addiction, these are only a few of the symptoms that you may experience. Your symptoms may be more or less intense depending on the severity of your addiction. An addiction to any drug can harbor symptoms that are unique to the individual. One constant symptom, however, is the continuous taking of the drug when you know you do not need it.
Physical Hydrocodone withdrawal symptoms can occur within 12 hours of last dose and may last up to 72 hours depending on the level of use and period of time they were using. This period is commonly known as the detox period because the body is flushing the toxins from the body. Detoxification, also known as detox, is the principle step to curing yourself of your Hydrocodone addiction. It is also the most uncomfortable, and, if the addiction is severe, should be monitored by licensed medical personnel. Many have found themselves relapsing when a peak of withdrawal symptoms occur, often about 2 days into the detox or withdrawal period. While in detox, your system must be denied of any hydrocodone, so your body can be cleansed.
Withdrawal symptoms of Hydrocodone include:
* Flu-like symptoms
* Mood Swings
A complete Hydrocodone detox is necessary for rehabilitation. Whether you are seen at an outpatient clinic or a residential treatment center, you will most likely begin the hydrocodone withdrawal process with detoxification, followed by medications and counseling. Many have experienced painful symptoms during detox at a drug detox center, such as nausea, sweats and chills, or pain all over their body. Fortunately, medications can be administered to lessen these symptoms. They can only be administered by professionals, however. For this reason, you will want to seek out some kind of treatment center for consultation before beginning withdrawal.
Hydrocodone Addiction Treatment Centers
While there are several treatment centers available to those who are addicted to alcohol or street drugs, many have recognized the need for treatment of opiate addictions such as Hydrocodone. Because they are not illegal and can be obtained easily by “doctor shopping.” Treatment centers and clinics are available throughout the country to aid in the withdrawal process. These treatment centers are tailored to your needs; if you have a less severe addiction, you can consider an outpatient clinic. A more severe addiction can be cured by attending residential treatment centers. Both offer professional treatment and medication to lessen withdrawal effects.