The increase in opioid prescriptions in the US explains the upsurge in overdose deaths. Opioid abuse often starts as a standard prescription for pain management. If taken per the doctor’s instructions, the drugs enable individuals to function normally where their life is often disrupted by moderate to severe pain.
Sadly, most patients who take opioids become dependent and develop a tolerance for the drug over time, increasing their intake to achieve similar effects. The long-run result is an addiction, resulting in overdose and other health complications. Here’s everything you need to know about Percocet addiction.
What is Percocet used for?
As stated earlier, percocets, also known as Perks, are pain-relieving opioids. These drugs contain two ingredients, oxycodone, and acetaminophen, in managing moderate to severe pain. Oxycodone is a potent opioid that binds to the brain’s mu-opioid receptors and nervous system. This produces feelings of relaxation, euphoria, and sedation, reducing pain.
Acetaminophen is a non-opioid that inhibits the production of certain pain and inflammation-causing chemicals. While acetaminophen is not as potent, its combination with oxycodone provides an effective pain relief than each on its own.
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Why People Abuse Perks
In earlier decades, Percocet was associated with the middle and upper classes, but today, it is a pervasive problem in all age groups, economic classes, races, and social classes. Opioids generally become less effective with prolonged use as the body develops tolerance and demands more to achieve the same pain relief or high. This explains why patients under prescription are equally at risk of addiction to the drug.
Besides individuals using perks under prescription, others obtain the drug illegally to experience a “high.” Most of these people engage to self-medicate against undiagnosed mental health issues like anxiety and depression. Other reasons include increasing comfort in social situations, changing their perspective of self, escaping a real-life problem, changing others’ perspective of them, and receiving increased attention from friends and family.
Symptoms of Perks Addiction
The presence of the following symptoms indicates perk addiction in an individual:
- Slow breathing
- Dry mouth
- Tiny pupils
In addition to the above, an individual with Percocet addiction will exhibit red flags that are a sign of abuse. This includes taking more than directed by the physician or taking the drug through an alternate method such as crushing, snorting, chewing, or injecting when their prescription is tablets. Such patients may also start doctor-shopping the drug to obtain multiple prescriptions rather than sticking to one doctor to monitor their use.
Side Effects of Perks Addiction
An individual struggling with perks addiction is prone to the following side effects in the long run:
- Liver failure due to too much acetaminophen
- Opioid withdrawal symptoms compelling misuse
- Overdose that can cause death
- Respiratory depression
Perks Withdrawal Symptoms
An individual with perk addiction will experience withdrawal symptoms when they quit the drug. The symptoms will vary depending on their length of use and dependence and will start 6-12 hours after the last dose. These symptoms include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal cramping, muscle pains and aches, agitation, chills, sweating, irritability, fatigue, insomnia, dilated pupils, high blood pressure, and rapid heartbeat.
Some patients will also experience life-threatening symptoms such as hallucinations, seizures, and delirium tremens, necessitating medical attention.
Managing Perks Addiction
Recovering from perks addiction is challenging but possible with the right resources and support. Start by seeking help from a healthcare professional or a rehabilitation center for a personalized treatment that meets your needs and addresses underlying issues causing the addiction. Percocet addiction treatment will comprise the following components:
Detoxification From Perks
Detoxification comprises eliminating perks from the body. Given the emergence of withdrawal symptoms at this stage, drug detox should be conducted under supervision.
Medically Assisted Treatment
Medically assisted treatment includes the administration of methadone and buprenorphine to manage the symptoms depending on their intensity and reduce perk cravings.
Behavioral Therapy and Support Groups
Behavioral therapy includes working with a counselor or therapists to develop coping skills, manage cravings and triggers and address underlying issues contributing to the addiction. Support groups, on the other hand, offer a sense of community and peer support to the persons recovering from perks addiction.
Additional Treatment Methods
Besides eliminating perks from a patient’s system, an effective treatment should prevent relapse by offering a course of action for extreme cravings. These include aftercare programs such as a sober living environment, follow-up counseling, and check-ins.
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Seek Help From Perks Addiction
While addiction to pain medication like perks seems harmless initially, the consequences are dire. As you become overly dependent on the drug, you risk severe withdrawal symptoms or an overdose which can be fatal. Therefore, if you or your loved one is struggling with perks addiction, sign up with a rehab near you and start your recovery journey. With assisted treatment, you will manage the withdrawal symptoms and risks of relapse for a healthy, drug-free life.