Signs of OxyContin Addiction
OxyContin is the brand name for an opioid analgesic containing the
active ingredient oxycodone. OxyContin is a legal narcotic that is available,
by prescription, to treat severe pain. It is classified as a Schedule
II drug, meaning it has a high potential for drug addiction and is only
available by prescription from a licensed physician. OxyContin most commonly
exists in tablet form. These round pills come in 10mg, 20mg, 40mg, 80mg
and 160mg dosages. OxyContin also comes in capsule or liquid form. There
are many physical and emotional signs of OxyContin addiction.
OxyContin addiction will leave the user suffering physically painful
symptoms if their bodies do not get more OxyContin. Signs of OxyContin
addiction can include insomnia, muscle and bone pain, sweats, diarrhea,
vomiting, nausea, stomach cramping, muscle twitching, as well as other
physical effects. The increase in OxyContin addictions has resulted in
criminal acts to steal OxyContin. Now, OxyContin labeling changes are
being made in hopes of reducing the risk of over prescribing OxyContin
and as a result, reducing OxyContin addiction.
When patients are in extreme pain and take OxyContin as directed, or
to the point where their pain is adequately controlled, it is not abuse
or addiction. Abuse occurs when patients take more than is needed for
pain control, especially if they take it to get high. Patients who take
their medication in a manner that grossly differs from a physician’s
directions are probably abusing that drug.
If a patient continues to seek excessive pain medication
after pain management is achieved, the patient may be addicted. OxyContin
addiction is characterized by the repeated, compulsive use of a substance
despite adverse social, psychological, and/or physical consequences.
OxyContin drug is crushed and then ingested, snorted, or diluted in
water and injected. Crushing or diluting the tablet disarms the timed-release
action of OxyContin to cause a quick and powerful heroin-like high. Some
areas in the country have replaced the use of heroin with the drug OxyContin.
OxyContin’s manufacturer, Purdue Pharma, has taken steps to reduce
the potential for abuse of the medication. An alternative to OxyContin
without the addictive traits is being studied, but if another medicine
is created it will not be available for a significant amount of time.
Until then, Purdue Pharma has been trying to develop ways of preventing
more instances of abuse and addiction to OxyContin.
Signs of OxyContin addiction included but are not limited to:
- Slow breathing (less than ten breaths a minute is really serious trouble)
- Small, pinpoint pupils
- Being tired, nodding off, or passing out
- Apathy (they don’t care about anything)
- Cold and clammy skin
A lot of these signs of OxyContin addiction can make people think their
friend is drunk. And they may be tempted to let them sleep it off, or
parents they had too much to drink. But don’t. The friend could go
to sleep and never wake up.