Lortab addiction is a growing problem in the United States. The drug is classified as a prescription pain relief medication. Even though it comes with some medical benefits, it is also among the most commonly abused substances in the United States.
Lortab contains hydrocodone as one of its ingredients. Due to this composition, it is similar to Vicodin. Since it is classified as an opioid, it is highly addictive. If you are struggling with Lortab addiction, you may struggle trying to overcome your substance use disorder independently. Luckily, there are treatment and rehabilitation options available today that can help you get started on the journey to full recovery.
As a pain relief medication, Lortab is also similar to Percocet. However, it has received mixed reviews in terms of its effectiveness. That said, you can be sure that if you abuse or misuse this drug, it can cause you to develop a substance use disorder. For this reason, you should only use it exactly as your doctor advised.
As mentioned above, Lortab contains acetaminophen and hydrocodone. Due to these chemicals, the drug is effective at easing moderate to very severe pain. Even so, it comes with a high risk of substance abuse and addiction.
The hydrocodone component works by attaching itself to the opioid receptors located in the brain. Due to this action, it will block the signals of pain that are sent to the brain by the CNS - the central nervous system. On the other hand, the acetaminophen component will reduce the chemicals inside the brain that are responsible for stimulating its pain nerves.
At the moment, Lortab is only manufactured in its liquid forms. For this reason, you might to be able to find it in pill or tablet form. It is also available in generic forms, known by a wide range of brand names and generic drugs such as Vicodin, Lorcet, Norco, Draco, Dro, and Vikes.
To this end, any other drug that is marketed as Lortab but is not in liquid form - such as pills - are most probably fake. These drugs are dangerous because you might not be able to tell what has been used to cut them.
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You should only take Lortab if you have a valid prescription from a licensed health care professional, such as a doctor or a physician. The drug is effective at managing severe pain. However, you should only take it for a short time period and at low doses. When you take this drug, it will cause some side effects that are similar to those produced by other opioids. These effects include but are not limited to:
When you misuse this drug, it could lead to the development of tolerance, dependence, and Lortab addiction. However, just because you abuse it does not necessarily mean that you have developed addiction.
The various effects of this drug will range widely from one person to another. They will typically depend on the duration of your substance abuse, the doses that you used to take, and the frequency of your drug taking. That said, the following are some of the typical effects of taking the drug:
There are also a number of disorders that tend to occur at the same time as Lortab addiction and abuse. These disorders include but are not limited to the following:
Lortab is also known as Vicodin, Norco, and Lorcet. It is a controlled substance that you should only use to manage pain after receiving a valid prescription from a health care professional.
The hydrocodone component in this medication is classified as an opioid. It is effective at managing moderate to very severe pain - which it does by changing the ways in which your brain perceives pain.
The drug also contains acetaminophen, which is an OTC - over the counter - pain relief medication. Acetaminophen is less potent than opioids. However, it can boost the effects of opioids when it is combined with them, such as is the case with Lortab.
Using this drug can easily cause you to develop a substance use disorder. This is because the narcotic component (hydrocodone) will affect the pleasure centers of the brain, thereby causing euphoria.
If you have a prescription for Lortab, your doctor will instruct you to only take the drug when you get the first signs of pain. However, there is a risk that you may be overly vigilant, in which case you may misinterpret basic pains and muscle aches as symptoms that have to be treated using this medication.
In the course of time, you may find that it is becoming increasingly easier for you to use the drug. This means that you will continue increasing your typical dosage or frequency of use far over and beyond the uses that your doctor prescribed or recommended.
Lortab is typically available in tablet form. A pharmacist will dispense it after you have shown them a valid prescription from your doctor. If you use the drug illicitly or without a prescription, you may crush it into a powder so that you can snort it. Alternatively, you may mix it with water or any other solution so that you can take it intravenously.
Both of these modes of administration will cause you to experience a stronger and faster high. This pleasurable effect will be similar to what you would feel if you were abusing other stronger drugs, such as heroin.
If you have developed a substance use disorder as a result of abusing Lortab, you may display a wide range of the typical signs and symptoms of a growing Lortab addiction problem. These symptoms include but are not limited to:
One of the clear signs and symptoms of Lortab addiction is the development of withdrawal symptoms when you stop taking this drug. Typically, you will first develop tolerance after a period of abusing it. This is because your body would have become accustomed to its effects.
As a result of tolerance, you will have to use the drug in higher doses or more frequently than you used to before you can experience the effects that your body and brain have come to associate with it.
Over time, tolerance will be replaced by dependence - both physical and psychological. When you are dependent on the drug, it means that you will not be able to go for long without taking it in a given dose.
If you do not use the drug or significantly reduce your typical dose of it and you are dependent, you will experience a wide range of disturbing, uncomfortable, and sometimes painful effects. These effects are collectively known as withdrawal symptoms.
The withdrawal symptoms that are associated with Lortab addiction include but are not limited to:
In case you are struggling with a substance use disorder associated with this drug, you should not try to quit unless you are enrolled in a professionally licensed addiction treatment and rehabilitation program. This is because the withdrawal symptoms you suffer may cause you to relapse and start abusing Lortab.
If you do so at a point where your tolerance to the drug has reduced but take the drug in the normal doses that you were accustomed to, there is a risk that you could suffer a drug overdose.
With an overdose involving Lortab, there are two primary considerations. For starters, you may overdose on its hydrocodone component. Similarly, it is possible to overdose on acetaminophen.
The hydrocodone component of the drug will slow down your respiratory system since it is an opioid drug. As a result, your breath might slow to such an extent that you suffer an overdose or even die. Due to hydrocodone, overdosing on Lortab may lead to the following signs and symptoms:
On the other hand, if you overdose on acetaminophen, the symptoms that you display might be slightly different. If you drink tons of alcohol on a regular basis or you have liver problems, it is highly likely that acetaminophen may lead to adverse effects. The signs and symptoms of acetaminophen overdose may include:
In case you are displaying any of the symptoms listed above and you have been abusing Lortab, it is highly likely that you are suffering from a drug overdose. In such a situation, is recommended that you seek emergency medical assistance since a Lortab overdose could lead to fatal outcomes.
To reduce all these risks of quitting Lortab, it is recommended that you seek help from a professional addiction treatment and rehabilitation facility or program. This way, you will be able to benefit from the following recovery modalities that are typically applied to manage this form of substance abuse and addiction:
After you have gone through a thorough evaluation and assessment, the recovery center will typically provide you with medically supervised detox services. The primary goal of detox will be to offer you physical and psychological stability so that you overcome your physical dependence on the drug.
During detox, your treatment professionals will also help protect you from the more adverse drug cravings and withdrawal symptoms that arise. Since some of these symptoms might be painful or even require round the clock monitoring, you should consider choosing to do detox on an inpatient basis.
There are 12 step programs such as Narcotics Anonymous (or NA) that cater to people who are in recovery from Lortab addiction. Depending on your location, you may find a NA session that has open meetings or even attend several meetings. The benefit of 12 step programs is that they are free to attend.
Most inpatient addiction treatment programs will last anywhere between 30 and 90 days, or even longer. These programs are recommended if you are struggling with a severe substance use disorder. You will be required to live at the treatment facility in controlled environments so that you can focus on overcoming your drug abuse and addiction problem. Inpatient treatment may also offer an immersive care environment away from the typical triggers and drug use cues that you usually encounter on a day to day basis.
In an outpatient treatment center, you will be able to go to the facility for a couple of sessions each week to work on overcoming your Lortab addiction. During the rest of the time, you can still continue working, attending school, or taking care of your other typical responsibilities and obligations. This might prove beneficial because you will still be able to achieve recovery from your addiction without letting your obligations go.
The important thing to keep in mind is that it is possible to overcome your Lortab addiction and abuse as long as you are enrolled in the right addiction treatment and rehabilitation program.