Oxycodone is an opioid generally prescribed to treat moderate to severe pain. Specifically, doctors prescribe it to alleviate the pain of patients who have undergone surgery or who are suffering from cancer or severe injury. But despite its medical benefits, this drug is highly addictive, just like most opioids. And this has become a significant concern nowadays. According to the CDC, in 2020, 75% of drug overdose deaths involved opioids. Thus, if you’re currently undergoing treatment with oxycodone, you should look for the signs of opioid addiction. If you identify any of the following six warning signs of oxycodone addiction, it’s time to seek professional help.
1. Developing a tolerance is one of the warning signs of oxycodone addiction
When you use the same meds for long periods, your body can easily develop a tolerance to them. As a result, you’ll feel like they are no longer working. So, you’ll gradually start to increase the dosage to get the initial effects. This applies to the majority of medications, but it’s perilous when it comes to opioids. The main reason for this is that oxycodone abuse can lead to overdose and even death.
2. Your prescription runs out earlier than it should
If you’re developing a tolerance to oxycodone and increasing the dosage, you’ll notice your prescription will run out earlier than it should. Unfortunately, when this happens, people usually start looking for alternatives. Most commonly, they search for new sources of opioids and end up asking different doctors for prescriptions. If this happens, the experts in addiction treatment from Bright Futures Treatment Center advise you to seek professional help immediately. This is one of the main warning signs of oxycodone addiction, and treating it as soon as you notice it is crucial.
3. You feel a constant craving
Feeling a constant craving for oxycodone is a clear sign of addiction. If you find yourself thinking about it all the time and feel like you can’t function without it, you’re in trouble. The same thing applies if you try to stop using it but can’t manage to do it. However, if you recognize the signs early and ask for help, it will be much easier to overcome this issue.
4. You start feeling and acting differently
Another warning sign of oxycodone addiction is that you start feeling and acting differently. Specifically, you’ll likely experience mood swings and paranoia. At the same time, you’ll notice that almost nothing, apart from opioids, brings you joy anymore. This, in turn, will make you want to isolate yourself from other people and avoid social activities. Furthermore, you’ll start to lie to friends and family to hide your addiction. Plus, people who abuse opioids also tend to steal money or valuables from their loved ones to buy more drugs.
5. It’s affecting your life
If you abuse oxycodone, you start feeling sleepy and drowsy all the time. As a result, you’ll no longer be interested in or capable of carrying out your daily activities. You’ll become more negligent and absent and neglect your responsibilities. Gradually, this will affect both your personal and professional life. You might end up losing your job, home, and the people you care about. In short, if you don’t get help, addiction can destroy your life.
6. You’re experiencing symptoms of withdrawal
One of the most apparent signs of oxycodone addiction is experiencing symptoms of withdrawal. Depending on how addicted you are to it, the symptoms can occur within 12 hours or a few days from your last fix. Common withdrawal symptoms include increased heart rate and breathing, cold flashes, muscle or bone pain, vomiting, and diarrhea. Unfortunately, these manifestations can easily be mistaken for other illnesses. Therefore, you must consult a doctor and be honest with them about using oxycodone.
Not every person who takes oxycodone becomes an addict. However, if you notice any of these six warning signs, you might have a problem. In this case, seeking treatment and admitting yourself into oxycodone rehab can help save your life. Look for a program catered to your needs to get the best possible results. For instance, you can opt for an outpatient program if your budget doesn’t allow it or you can’t take too much time off from work. Nevertheless, if your addiction is very severe, you might not have any other choice than to enroll in an inpatient program.
What happens after?
Most people mistakenly think that you’re cured once you undergo addiction treatment. Unfortunately, the hard part comes afterward. Once you finish treatment, you have to readjust to life after addiction and learn how to resist the temptation of falling back into your old habits. This can be hard to achieve because many things can trigger you. Everything from specific places and people to certain events and feelings can make you crave oxycodone.
So, how can you stay clean? Well, enrolling in an aftercare program is an excellent idea. Here, you’ll receive ongoing counseling and emotional support from both specialists and other recovering addicts. Simply discussing your struggles with people who understand what you’re going through is extremely helpful. Not to mention that these people can offer you valuable advice on how to manage your addiction triggers. Finally, once you adjust to this new life, you can become a sponsor and help others in their journey to recovery.
While oxycodone has its medical benefits, it’s also a powerful and addictive opioid. Therefore, if your doctor prescribes it, make sure you stick to the prescribed dosage. Otherwise, you’ll quickly become addicted to it. Unfortunately, people often don’t realize they have a problem until it’s too late. That’s why you should always look for these six warning signs of oxycodone addiction.
In case you identify any of them, contact your doctor or a specialist immediately. The sooner you get help, the better. Because the more addicted you become to opioids, the harder it will be to overcome your addiction.