Oxycodone Addiction and Abuse

Modified: 22nd Jul 2019

Did you know that substance abuse costs the United States more than $740 billion each year?

Out of this, prescription opioids account for $26 billion in terms of health care. It’s the fourth most costly substance, which includes crime and lost productivity in work.

Oxycodone addiction can affect your life in a lot of different ways. But what causes people to abuse prescription drugs? Read on and find out more.

Oxycodone Addiction Statistics

This drug has grown in popularity for the last two decades. People become addicted to this substance due to a lot of reasons. This is despite the fact that the substance is dangerous when misused.

There are about 60 million prescriptions for drugs that contain oxycodone. It’s often used to relieve pain, but like other opioids, it’s prone to abuse. It’s shown by the fact that despite the increase of oxycodone prescriptions, the number of Americans complaining about pain didn’t decrease.

That means some people get prescriptions for recreational use. It isn’t limited to adults since teens often get access to this substance in their homes. They often find this drug in their own medicine cabinets, especially OxyContin.

Often, teenagers learn about the drug through their school friends. Most of them view it as a harmless drug due to its legality. But that makes them develop an addiction to it as time goes by.

General Stats on Addiction to Oxycodone

According to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), more than 16 million people reported abusing oxycodone at least once in their life. It’s an increase of a million compared to the preceding years. It’s a disturbing reality that reflects the current state of the country’s population.

More than 150,000 people are rushed to the emergency room due to oxycodone overdose each year. It’s only expected to grow from there. After all, law enforcement authorities documented higher rates of oxycodone-related violations compared to other prescription drugs.

As for overdose deaths, almost 218,000 people died within the span of two decades. It includes other prescription drugs related to opioids. But the more troubling fact is that the overdose deaths are five times higher in 2017 than in 1999.

Signs Of Oxycodone Abuse

There are a lot of signs and symptoms that can help you determine whether you’re addicted to the oxy drug. It’s important to look for medical assistance if you’re experiencing any of the symptoms. They can affect your health in the long run.

You’re most likely addicted to oxycodone if you’re always trying to get a prescription through illegal means. Some addicts might even steal the substance from another person. Others might steal money or goods to get more of the drug.

Due to its addictive nature, you might end up missing work or school. If not, your performance will decline due to the high it gives. Those with severe addictions end up abusing the drug even when they recognize its risks.

Most oxycodone abusers suffer from cognitive disorders. They often have poor spatial abilities and can’t focus or concentrate on their tasks. That affects their ability to assess their situation, making them liable to make poor judgments.

As for its psychosocial symptoms, oxycodone abuse can make you develop paranoia. It also heightens your anxiety, leading you to have mood swings. People might start distancing themselves to you since you’re likely to have angry outbursts due to the drug.

Am I Addicted?

The best way to determine whether you’re addicted is to look for the physical symptoms. Most abusers tend to lose a lot of weight. If you take the drug a lot, you’ll find that your breathing is often shallow, slow, or labored.

Your performance can decline due to poor coordination, balance, and reaction time. The fact that you’ll start feeling drowsy or yawn more frequently won’t help. You might even end up having a faint pulse.

The numbness of pain brought by addiction can make you try reckless behaviors. It’s especially prevalent when you’re already dependent on the drug. There are times you can try stopping intake, but you’re more likely to go back due to the dangerous, unpleasant withdrawal symptoms you might experience.

Dangers of Oxycodone Abuse

The longer you use oxycodone, the possibility of dependence increases until you get addicted. Even irregular users can experience unpleasant effects of oxycodone. That means addicted users experience dangerous effects the more they use the prescription drug.

Most users find themselves developing new mental health problems. If you have depression, the drug will make it even worse once you get addicted to it. That means you’re more likely to become more disinterested with the things you cared about before.

If you accidentally overdose, you might end up with permanent brain damage. That can lead you to change your personality and have relationship problems. The latter can fuel your depression more, filling you with thoughts of hopelessness and despair.

Oxycodone abuse can also make you lose intelligence and make you forgetful. It changes your appetite and sleep patterns, leading to more body imbalance. That leads you to develop some cardiovascular problems and decrease your immunity.

This drug is even more dangerous for pregnant women. Abusing oxycodone can result in pregnancy complications. It causes miscarriages, stillbirths, premature labor, and birth defects to your baby.

Learn About Oxycodone Addiction Today!

Oxycodone is an insidious drug when misused. People who develop an addiction to it will have a hard time stopping. After all, the withdrawal symptoms can get life-threatening.

Most will experience pangs of pain and intense cravings when they try to stop alone.

If you see these symptoms of Oxycodone addiction on a family member, don’t hesitate. Approach them in a non-confrontational manner. Make them feel that you only have their best interests in mind.

Most abusers know they’re addicted but often they’re scared to seek help. Once you convince them to start recovering, you can now work together. Their journey to sobriety will affect you too, so stay strong.

Do you have questions about addiction? Contact us today and we’ll be glad to help you.