Oxycodone is a prescription medication that has provided much-needed relief for people living with chronic, severe pain and those recovering from surgeries. However, because it is an opioid, it comes with a high potential for addiction, even if you take it as intended and follow all your doctor’s instructions. What happens with an opioid addiction, and what should you do if you become dependent on this drug?
How Does Oxycodone Work?
Like all opioids, oxycodone acts upon receptors in the brain and central nervous system, releasing a flood of endorphins that cause intense feelings of euphoria and comfort. After taking oxycodone for only a short period, you can begin to rely on the effects it creates, which is the first milestone on the path to becoming dependent on the drug.
When you regularly use opioids, your body responds by slowing its natural endorphin production, and your original dosage fails to produce the same powerful effect. Then, you may start taking larger doses so you can achieve the same high. However, because many states have passed laws limiting opioid prescriptions and doctors are highly aware of the risks, you may find it challenging to get more oxycodone when you run out. At this point, some opioid users turn to illegal methods to obtain more drugs instead of quitting.
Risk Factors for Opioid Addiction
While anyone can develop a substance use disorder, some circumstances might make you more susceptible to an oxycodone addiction. These include:
- A family history of drug and alcohol abuse or mental illnesses
- A preference for risk-taking or thrill-seeking behavior
- Severe depression or anxiety
- Stressful life circumstances
- Past criminal activity or legal issues, such as a DUI
- Having close friends or relatives who regularly drink or use drugs excessively
Oxycodone Withdrawal Symptoms
Eventually, you may reach a point where you realize your oxycodone use has become a problem. Perhaps you have lost your job because your colleagues reported you for using drugs at work, or you’re having trouble paying your bills because you’ve spent so much money on opioids. However, trying to taper off oxycodone or quit altogether can be challenging because the associated withdrawal symptoms are so unpleasant. Typical characteristics of withdrawal from oxycodone include:
- Mood swings
- Depression, anxiety or suicidal thoughts
- Irregular heart rate
- Flu-like body aches
- Runny nose
What Is Medication-Assisted Treatment?
Medication-assisted treatment is a strategy that has helped thousands of people overcome severe addictions by curbing dangerous and uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms. Thoroughly ridding your body and mind of drugs during the detoxification process sets the stage for a successful recovery. Unfortunately, many people find detox so unbearable that they return to substance use.
At Pillars Recovery, we administer two FDA-approved medications during medically managed detox: buprenorphine and naltrexone. While there is a misconception among some people that medication-assisted treatment is replacing one drug with another, that is not the case. Because MAT takes place in a highly controlled environment that includes professional counseling and an individualized treatment program, it starts your recovery process on the right foot.
Southern California Oxycodone Rehab
If you are searching for medication-assisted treatment for opioid addiction, you should know that not all programs offer this comfortable, safe detox option. At Pillars Recovery, our Orange County medication-assisted treatment approach has proven successful for young women and men battling opioid addiction. If you are ready to learn more about partnering with us on your journey toward lifelong sobriety, reach out today.