OxyContin is an opioid pain medication used to treat moderate to severe pain. Opioid pain medications bind to the opioid receptors in the brain and alter how the body perceives and experiences pain. While OxyContin has medical use, it is a very addictive drug. The risk of addiction is greater when the drug is abused recreationally. OxyContin should be taken at the amount prescribed by a medical professional. Taking higher doses than prescribed or using it for a long period can lead to addiction.1
OxyContin is the brand name for the extended-release form of oxycodone. The main difference between OxyContin and oxycodone is the amount of time it takes for the body to absorb a full dose. Oxycodone is an immediate release drug, meaning smaller and more frequent doses are used to treat pain. Since OxyContin is an extended-release medication, a larger dosage can be taken and last for a longer duration.2
Both OxyContin and hydrocodone are powerful opioid pain killers. The main difference between the two is that OxyContin is about 30% more powerful. Studies have shown that OxyContin is better at treating pain than hydrocodone. Since OxyContin is more powerful, it is also prone to additional side effects. Gastrointestinal problems and constipation are side effects that may occur when taking OxyContin but aren’t common with hydrocodone.3
There is a problem with OxyContin being bought and sold on the streets for recreational use. Recreational use of this drug should be avoided. Common street names for OxyContin include:
OxyContin is generally administered to patients through extended-release tablets. OxyContin dosage in tablet form ranges from 5mg – 120mg depending on the patient and their pain treatment needs.
OxyContin IR is the immediate release version of OxyContin. Immediate-release tablets allow the body to absorb the full dose of medication quicker for immediate pain relief.
OxyContin addiction is serious, and it is important to look for signs that someone is struggling so they can receive help. Signs of OxyContin addiction may be physical or behavioral.
Common physical signs of OxyContin addiction may include:
Common behavioral signs of OxyContin addiction may include:
OxyContin addiction is dangerous and can negatively affect one’s life. Many short and long-term side effects can be caused by the misuse or abuse of this drug.
Common short-term OxyContin side effects may include:
Common long-term OxyContin side effects may include:
When someone takes large doses of OxyContin over an extended time, they will build a tolerance, meaning increasingly higher doses are needed to receive the same effects. Taking high doses of OxyContin can lead to an overdose. If someone overdoses, they must receive immediate medical attention. Common OxyContin overdose symptoms may include:
When OxyContin is taken for a long period, both a physical and psychological dependence can be formed on the drug. Withdrawal symptoms may occur when drug use ceases. Common withdrawal symptoms include:
Purdue Pharma is a company that faced legal trouble for the way they marketed and promoted OxyContin products. The FDA regulates how addictive drugs, such as OxyContin, are marketed to prevent people from unnecessarily taking highly addictive drugs. Purdue Pharma pleaded guilty to charges of fraud and kickback conspiracies due to a large amount of evidence found against them.8
If you or someone you know is struggling with an OxyContin addiction, there are treatment options available. Speaking to a medical professional or going to a treatment center is the first step towards recovery.
Detox happens early in the recovery process. You will experience withdrawal symptoms during detox. However, a treatment center can help one through the detox process, so it is as safe and comfortable as possible.
If you are experiencing unbearable withdrawal symptoms, medication-assisted treatment may be an option. This treatment relieves withdrawal symptoms and prevents relapse from occurring. Common medications used to treat opioid addiction include naltrexone, buprenorphine, and methadone. All these medications have been extensively studied and have shown overall positive results when treating opioid addiction.9
Inpatient rehab can be a good option for treating OxyContin addiction. Inpatient treatment involves staying at a treatment center for a duration of time. Inpatient rehab provides around-the-clock medical attention, a structured support system, and therapy to develop coping mechanisms to deal with the stresses of life without drugs.
If you or a loved one needs help, please call us at
(888) 744-9969 and our team at Blueprints For Recovery in Arizona will help.