Hydrocodone is an opioid or narcotic, and one of the most prescribed prescription drugs to treat pain or to stop coughing. It’s possibly no surprise it’s one of the most abused prescription drugs, due to the euphoric high it gives people. Hydrocodone is more popularly known by its brand names, including Vicodin, Lorcet, Lortab and many others.
There are a number of hydrocodone abuse side effects, which include:
- Dizziness or lightheadedness
- Nausea and vomiting
- Fear and depression
- Ringing in the ears
- Blurred vision
From Helpful Medication To Deadly Addiction
How can a drug that is so addictive be given to people for medical reasons? If taking the drugs as directed by a doctor, there is a low risk hydrocodone addiction. However, many people misuse the drugs, and the risk of developing an addiction to hydrocodone rises. People may not realize they are addicted, so it’s important to know hydrocodone addiction signs. These include:
- Using hydrocodone without a current, personal prescription
- Taking too much of the drug in one dose
- Using hydrocodone with alcohol or other drugs
- Taking hydrocodone beyond its medical necessity
- Faking injury to obtain more painkiller medication.
Hydrocodone Addiction Treatment
On the surface, hydrocodone addiction treatment seems easy: A person just has to stop using the drug. However, this is easier said than done, as stopping the use of any drug leads to withdrawal, the symptoms of which can be extremely painful and sometimes deadly. Any person who attempts to stop taking a drug often relapses due to withdrawal symptoms. That’s why health professionals discourage people from going “cold turkey” when trying to stop drug use.
Hydrocodone abuse withdrawal symptoms can include:
- Difficulty sleeping
- Anxiety and Depression
- Body aches and intense sweating
- Nausea and vomiting
- Rapid or irregular heartbeat
Hydrocodone addiction treatment should be performed with a physician’s help or at a drug treatment center. While the withdrawal symptoms are not as severe as other drugs, medical detox may still be needed to treat hydrocodone addiction. In detox, an individual lessens or stops using a drug while medical professionals treat their withdrawal symptoms and prevent any life-threatening issues.
However, detox is only the first step. Counseling and therapy are also part of hydrocodone abuse treatment. This can help address the reasons a person abused hydrocodone, and counselors and therapists can teach people the tools and skills they need to regain control of their lives and health. Therapy and counseling may be needed to treat any co-occurring disorders as well. A person who has a co-occurring disorder has two illnesses at once, such as hydrocodone addiction and depression. The co-occurring illness can affect a person’s recovery and make them relapse. It needs to be treated at the same time in order to ensure recovery.