Oxycontin Addiction Signs
OxyContin is a potent narcotic pain reliever used to treat moderate to severe pain. It is an extended-release version of oxycodone which is among the most abused opioid prescription drugs on the market. OxyContin abusers often bypass the time release protective coating in an effort to inject or snort the medication for a quick, intense “high”. This increases the dosage amounts of the drug and in turn, increases tolerance and dependency levels. One of the most distinctive signs of Oxycontin addiction is abuse by these methods. Oxycontin addiction signs are noticeable in physical and psychological changes that the addict develops with prolonged use. While some individuals receive legitimate prescriptions for this medication, there is a high risk potential for addiction because of its pleasurable and euphoric effects.
Physical Addiction Signs
Altered reward pathways in the brain results in physical dependency that requires the addict to use Oxycontin regularly or risk extremely unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. These symptoms vary from nausea, vomiting, cramps, and agitation, to more severe impairments in chronic abusers such as seizures, or coma. Physical addiction signs may include unexplained loss of appetite, “nodding off”, episodes of extreme drowsiness, weakness, lack of motivation, or increased dosages that debilitate normal ability to function. Using more Oxycontin than prescribed, using more often, and using in alternate ways to produce a desired effect are other common signs of addiction. Physical impairments can be more severe when Oxycontin is combined with alcohol, sedatives, or stimulants and overdoses, coma, and death become more common.
Psychological Addiction Signs
Psychological addiction signs include behavioral changes where the addict’s main focus is the next expected “high”. Priorities involve obtaining and using the drug and normal abilities to function may become impaired. The addict may exhibit irrational behaviors of anxiety, anger, fear, irritation, and agitation which may occur as the addict expects to use or fears being unable to use. Relationships may change to revolve around circumstances that promote the ability to use while neglecting or abusing family and friends. Secretive use, denial of use, and deviant behaviors to use are some other common addiction signs. Some addicts will obtain multiple prescriptions by “doctor shopping”, forging prescriptions, faking injuries or losses, and lying to physicians regardless of the negative consequences to their health or others.