Oxycontin Addiction

Oxycontin Addiction Q & A

What is OxyContin?

OxyContin contains the opioid oxycodone and is one of the most widely used prescription painkillers for moderate-to-severe pain. It’s also one of the opioid medications most likely to be abused.

Oxycodone comes from thebaine, a substance found in opium, which means it has a similar composition to heroin, hydrocodone, and oxymorphone. Oxycodone is a Schedule II drug under the Controlled Substances Act, recognizing the fact that although it has a legitimate medical role, there’s also a significant risk of abuse and addiction.

How does OxyContin work?

Opioids like the oxycodone in OxyContin work by activating opioid receptors on cells in your brain, spinal cord, and elsewhere around your body. When the OxyContin attaches itself to these opioid receptors, it blocks pain signals and releases large amounts of a neurotransmitter called dopamine.

Dopamine is responsible for producing pleasurable feelings, so when some people first take OxyContin on prescription, they find it gives them both relief from pain and feelings such as:

  • Happiness
  • Reduced anxiety
  • Confidence
  • Relaxation
  • Drowsiness
  • Calmness
  • Dizziness
  • Euphoria

Over time their body gets used to the drug, meaning they need to take extra doses to achieve the same results. After a while, this becomes a dependence that may develop into a dangerous addiction.

OxyContin has a controlled-release formula that’s intended to provide relief from chronic pain over a 12-hour period. However, this can be bypassed by snorting crushed pills or injecting pills dissolved in water. When taken this way, OxyContin gives the user feelings of relaxation and pleasure similar to that of heroin, but at a lesser intensity.

What treatments are available for OxyContin addiction?

It’s essential to seek help from addiction experts like Carty Addiction and Internal Medicine Clinic if you have an OxyContin problem. Trying to come off opioid drugs without help can cause severe withdrawal symptoms, including:

  • Cravings
  • Muscle pain
  • Problems sleeping
  • Vomiting and diarrhea
  • Bone pain
  • Shakes and chills
  • Twitching limbs

At Carty Addiction and Internal Medicine Clinic, you can avoid the more extreme withdrawal symptoms on their medication-assisted treatment (MAT) program with buprenorphine or buprenorphine/naloxone (Suboxone). MAT combines the use of Suboxone medication, counseling, and behavior modification therapies to make the withdrawal process as comfortable as possible.

Suboxone contains buprenorphine and naloxone, two drugs that replace the OxyContin in your system and help reduce your cravings. Suboxone is only available from qualified medical specialists who have a buprenorphine waiver from SAMHSA, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, like Carty Addiction and Internal Medicine Clinic.

To find out more about escaping your OxyContin addiction trap, call Carty Addiction and Internal Medicine Clinic today, or book an appointment using the online tool.

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