For people suffering traumatic pain, oxycodone can provide some relief. However, more and more people are using this drug for recreational use because of its euphoric effects. This brings forth a rather dark side of this otherwise beneficial drug.
Illicit users enjoy the sense of pleasure that oxycodone provides, not minding the various health risks that come with abusing the drug. Because of its surging popularity, it is quickly becoming compared to both heroin and morphine.
This substance is a semi-synthetic opioid that is synthesized from thebaine, a common opioid alkaloid found in the opium poppy. Thebaine is specifically found in Persian poppy.
Oxycodone is also a potent opioid analgesic, which is why it is often prescribed for pain relief. It can help treat pain ranging from moderate to severe. In fact, in the US, it is approved for use in children as young as 11 years old. It works for cancer pain, trauma pain, and post-surgical pain.
In the medical industry, it is considered a powerful and effective pain-relieving drug. But the problem lies in its illicit use—and what happens to people who abuse it.
The substance was first developed in Germany in 1917. It was synthesized in the hopes of improving the roster of available opioids in the market at that time. Oxycodone was among the many semi-synthetic opioids produced for this purpose. It is also among the few that managed to achieve its initial purpose.
Despite its pain relief effects, experts are still divided over whether it is truly effective for non-cancer-related chronic pain. The main argument against oxycodone is that it also has a high risk for developing dependence. This means it puts the patient at risk of experiencing paradoxical pain sensitivity—making the condition worse.
Abusers often start on this path by misusing their prescription. Due to the euphoric effects of oxycodone, it is quite habit-forming. Many people, even those who simply need to use it for pain relief, may find themselves compelled to take a higher dosage, or take the same dosage more often than recommended.
It can easily cause dependence, so be sure to follow the prescription carefully. Misusing this drug can lead to a number of different problems for the user.
Oxycodone, when abused, may produce various adverse effects. This makes it much more dangerous for the person’s body. They may experience dizziness, vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, anxiety, and abdominal pain. These are just the short term effects.
In higher doses, the effects are more serious. They may suffer from low blood pressure, slowed heart rate, and shallow breathing. In the worst cases, oxycodone abusers suffer from respiratory arrest, brain damage, and even sudden death.
When a person develops dependence, withdrawal makes it so much harder for them to get back to being sober. Quitting becomes difficult. Common withdrawal symptoms include depression, coughing, diarrhea, vomiting, anxiety, muscle pain, and tremors.
These effects push people into taking the drug again, to make the symptoms disappear briefly.
During addiction treatment, these withdrawal symptoms will be addressed while the patient’s body is detoxified. A good treatment facility will be able to lower the dosage gradually, until the person fully recovers.
To ensure their recovery, find a facility that is well-equipped, convenient, and has well-trained staff. This will be the first step towards the patient’s recovery. They may be given specific medicines that could decrease their cravings for the drug. If a person relapses, these medicines would also block the effects of oxycodone.