In the oxycodone vs hydrocodone debate, there are plenty of similarities. Both medications require a physician’s prescription. Each one works as a painkiller for acute as well as chronic pain. More importantly, both drugs present with a high addiction and abuse potential.
Opioid Addictions Show Dramatic Increases in the United States
Prescription drug addiction is on the rise. For some, the habit starts with a prescription that they fill and take according to the instructions. Then, the body develops a tolerance to the dose. In turn, the doctor increases the dosage.
When patients try to quit using the drug, withdrawal symptoms set in. These are often so unpleasant that people continue taking the drugs just to avoid them. On the other side of the coin, another group of individuals may discover that increasing the painkiller dosage leads to bouts of euphoria. This recognition creates a powerful reinforcement to continue using the drugs in an off-label way.
Oxycodone vs Hydrocodone
You may know hydrocodone under the names Vicodin, Lortab, or Ibudone. This codeine derivative stays active in your system for three to six hours. In addition to its pain-killing properties, this substance also works well as a cough suppressant. One of the most side effects that users most often mention is constipation.
Pharmacies sell oxycodone under the brand names OxyContin, Endocodone, or Percolone. Scientists agree that this opium alkaloid offshoot has a somewhat higher abuse potential. It has a half-life of about three to four hours.
Commonalities of the Drugs
Formulations aside, both drugs have a clear abuse potential. They’re both nervous system depressants that slow your breathing and heart rate. Mixing them with some herbal supplements or alcohol can heighten this effect. Doing so has the potential to lead to a serious and potentially life-threatening slowing of vital functions.
Without intervention, there’s a very real possibility that you might die. When your breathing slows, it may result in insufficient oxygen delivery to vital organs. Depending on the dose and mix with other drugs, you might cease to breathe altogether. Another health warning involves damage to the liver when habitually increasing the dosage of the drugs.
Overcoming an Addiction
What sometimes gets lost in the oxycodone vs hydrocodone debate is the experience of a drug addiction. Addictions to medications require psychotherapy to overcome the stranglehold of the dependence. Possible modalities include:
- Individual talk therapy between the program participant and therapist
- Group therapy that aids in the development of peer relationships and self-esteem
- Dual diagnosis treatment for people dealing with addiction as well as psychological disorders
- Trauma therapy to help individuals move forward in the ways they handle trigger situations
- Continuing care that takes you through the first year of your recovery process
If you need help with an addiction to painkillers today, the friendly experts at Crestview Recovery can help. Don’t let these drugs rob you of your life’s enjoyment! Call 866.262.0531 today to find out how easy it is to check in!