Oxycontin Addiction Side Effects
Oxycontin is a prescription medication for pain. People who have pain disorders or recuperating from surgery or other medical procedures may receive this medication. Many people also become addicted to it, mentally and physically. Understanding the side effects of Oxycontin might help you understand why it’s imperative to contact your doctor if you feel you are becoming dependent on the pain reliever.
Side Effects of Oxycontin Addiction
The most common side effect of Oxycontin is respiratory depression, which can lead to respiratory arrest. The elderly and those taking large doses of the drug and combining other drugs with this one are those who are most likely to experience this effect.
Hypotension can also result from taking this medication. Those who are taking Phenothiazines or other medications that affect vasomotor tone are more likely to experience this side effect. Those with a depleted blood volume are also most likely to experience hypotension from Oxycontin.
Death can result from taking Oxycontin. However, most people who die from this medication do so because they took a large dose with alcohol, opiates, or benzodiapines.
While these are the most serious side effects of Oxycontin, there are milder effects many people experience. Some of these side effects include:
Oxycontin addicts are likely to feel many of the withdrawal effects of this drug, even when they continue to use it. When their tolerance level rises, they must take more Oxycontin to achieve the same effect they received before their level rose.
What this means is that if the addict doesn’t take the larger dose, they may begin to experience side effects because their body craves more of the drug but isn’t receiving it. When the body doesn’t receive the amount that it seeks or doesn’t get it at all, physical side effects may present themselves.
The first sign is that the addict will not feel like eating or will start to eat too much. This change in appetite is the body signaling that something isn’t right. When the addict takes the drug, these appetite changes usually subside.
Along with appetite changes, sleeping habits also change. Some addicts will sleep all the time, while others will sleep less than usual. This is usually because of anxiety they experience because of not having the drug or enough of it in their body.
With changes in sleep and eating habits, addicts usually spend less time caring what they look like. This means they do not bathe or groom themselves. They begin to have a disheveled appearance.
The disheveled appearance goes right along with their impaired coordination. Addicts may walk unsteadily as though they are alcoholics, rather than drug addicts. They may even have slurred speech, bloodshot eyes, and large or small pupils.
Physical Side Effects of Oxycontin Addiction
Behavior Side Effects of Oxycontin Addiction
There are some behavioral signs of Oxycontin addiction as well. Addicts will often have a low temper and act out aggressively. They might also experience mania, marked by bursts of energy, excessive spending, impulsiveness and poor judgment.
Many people will lose their job when they become addicted to Oxycontin because of these behavioral effects from the drug and their obsession with taking the drug to satisfy their cravings.
Due to their behavior and losing their job, many addicts will become depressed. This depression can lead to isolation, losing friends and family and becoming even further addicted to the drug to cope with the changes.
In time, financial problems usually result. This is mostly because acquiring the drug from the streets comes at a high price and due to the increasing tolerance for the drug it leads to more spending. This lack of money can sometimes turn an addict towards stealing money and possessions to sell. The focus becomes acquiring the drug and moral judgment no longer applies.
Other behavioral side effects include confusion, hallucinations and memory loss. As you can see, the drug has a large effect on the brain and its processes.
Long-Term Side Effects of Axycontin Addiction
When addicts take Oxycontin they are only thinking about the temporary high they receive from it, not the long-term risks of taking it. This can be devastating because this drug has some serious long-term consequences.
Medical problems due to chronic hypotension, accelerated heart rate and pulse are the most common long-term effects of the drug. However, the worst one is the possibility of death. As addicts increase their dosage of the drug to satisfy their rise in tolerance level, they start to ingest more than their body can handle. This can cause cardiac arrest and if left untreated, death.
Alleviating the Side Effects of Oxycontin Addiction
The best way to alleviate the side effects of Oxycontin addiction is to begin recovery. The first step is to admit to having a problem. The next step to seek treatment for it.
Treatment involves withdrawal from the drug. Medical professionals usually monitor this since it can be an unpleasant process. Once the body has expelled the drug completely, addicts will then need to work on the mental addiction with the drug. The most effective form of treatment for the mental addiction is therapy within a drug treatment center (800-303-2482) or at an outpatient drug treatment facility.
Typically, therapy involves meeting with a counselor who specializes in drug addiction. There may be group therapy options available as well. This includes people who are also recovering from Oxycontin addiction or sometimes individuals recovering from different drugs.
While it may not be an easy way to ease the side effects of Oxycontin addiction, it’s the only way to do it. Get the help you need so you can stop feeling ill when you don’t get the drugs your body really doesn’t need to function. It all starts with you and your acceptance of having a drug addiction.