When it comes to prescribed medication, most of us think nothing of taking what the doctor prescribes us. However, just because a doctor gives us the medication doesn’t mean there aren’t side effects, interactions with other medications, or the potential for addiction. It’s important to understand the risks of any medications you are given, and the potential for complications while taking them. Whether it is your personal prescription or a loved one is taking the medication, this is true.
At Recover Now, we know that even if someone intends to use a medication properly, there is still the potential for addiction. In this post, we are going to take a close look at the drug Vicodin, the effects of Vicodin, whether Vicodin is addictive, the symptoms of Vicodin withdrawal, and how to get help for someone addicted to Vicodin.
What is Vicodin?
Vicodin is the brand name for the combination narcotic hydrocodone/acetaminophen. The drug is most often used to treat chronic and severe pain in patients with ongoing medical conditions or serious injuries that require pain management. It is classified under the drug category as an opioid.
Opioids include a wide variety of prescription drugs, including oxycontin, oxycodone, and others, and illicit drugs like heroin and fentanyl, which is both prescription medication and a street drug in their unregulated form.
How is Vicodin Used?
Because Vicodin is a combination of an opioid and a non-opioid pain reliever in one, it is used to treat moderate to severe pain in a number of situations where less potent pain relievers are ineffective. It is most often used for patients with bone fractures and other serious injuries and those with chronic medical conditions that require pain relief. One of the primary reasons that Vicodin is widely prescribed is because of its potency and the fact that it begins to act relatively quickly.
The drug itself works to both relieve the immediate pain thanks to the non-opioid component and to change the way the brain responds to pain thanks to the opioid portion of the medication. This combination provides immediate relief that most patients want with long-term relief by altering the pain receptors.
Is Vicodin Addictive?
Though Vicodin is a combination drug, it still contains components of an opioid and is listed as highly addictive. In fact, due to how widely available they are and the way that they impact the body, opioids are one of the most widely abused and widely available substances in America today. Even when taken as prescribed, there is a potential for addiction.
There are two primary reasons why Vicodin is abused, and people potentially become addicted. The first reason is that many people who use the drug for an extended period like the way the drug makes them feel. Thus they continue to use the drugs or find new ways to use the drug in order to feel the effects that they like.
The second reason that people become addicted to Vicodin is because it alters the chemistry of the brain. As this change happens, the body and mind become dependent on the drug to function normally. As this continues, the person begins to crave the drug and will go to whatever means necessary to acquire more, resulting in full-blown addiction. If a person stops using, even for a short time, they are likely to go through withdrawal. This is why getting treatment at a licensed treatment facility is recommended.
What Are the Symptoms of Vicodin Withdrawal?
Vicodin addiction carries with it the potential for withdrawal. Withdrawal symptoms vary by individual and length of use, but can range from increased heart rate, trouble breathing, anxiousness, and paranoia, to more severe symptoms such as seizures and potentially even coma.
Because Vicodin is a combination medication, it can have a variety of symptoms depending on health history and whether the drug was mixed with other substances such as alcohol. It is important not to stop using Vicodin by yourself as the side effects of withdrawal can be life-threatening.
How to Find a Vicodin Detox Program
The best way to find a Vicodin detox program is by looking for your local licensed treatment facility like ours here at Recover Now. At our luxury Louisiana rehab, we focus on the quality of care and treating the root cause of addiction, not just detox. While detox is the first step in your journey, we aim to be there for you throughout your residential stay, into aftercare, and beyond. Recover Now offers addiction treatment and detox in Louisana. If you or someone you know is suffering from a Vicodin addiction, contact Recover Now today.