Vicodin has a legitimate purpose, but when it’s abused, it can ruin your life. In America, Vicodin is one of the most abused medications. It’s a powerful prescription medication, and it’s primarily used as a painkiller. Since it’s a strong opiate, it’s regulated by the DEA; Vicodin is labeled as a controlled substance, and you must have a prescription to possess it. Every year, over 125 million prescriptions are given for Vicodin. The number of prescriptions written for Vicodin is already huge, but despite this fact, the number continues to grow. Each year, doctors write millions of additional prescriptions for this powerful narcotic.
Why is Vicodin Abused?
The main reason people abuse Vicodin is because it provides a very strong sensation of euphoria. A lot of people say the euphoria obtained by abusing Vicodin rivals the euphoria experienced when using heroin. Some people use Vicodin to get relief from pain, but others abuse Vicodin for the high that it provides. An interesting fact is that the overwhelming majority of the global supply of Vicodin is consumed by Americans.
When you consider how many individuals die from opiate-related overdoses, Vicodin is the leading cause. In many states, more people are killed by a Vicodin overdose than by traffic accidents. Most forms of Vicodin contain acetaminophen. Vicodin is a very addictive drug, and it doesn’t take long to get addicted to it. As is the case with similar drugs, more Vicodin is needed to achieve thsame effect, so drug users get caught in a cycle of continuous use. It’s not uncommon for people to start out abusing Vicodin, and when it stops getting them high, they move on to stronger opiates, such as oxycodone and heroin.
The Effects of Vicodin
It’s important to understand how Vicodin affects the body. Since Vicodin is a member of the opiate family, it produces many of the same effects as other opiates. It can cause relaxation, faintness, weakness, nausea, dizziness, drowsiness, high blood pressure and euphoria. However, serious side effects aren’t terribly uncommon. Some people experience paradoxical effects, such as rapid or slowed heartbeat. Vicodin is known to slow breathing, so in some cases, individuals can suffer breathing-related issues.
Vicodin has also been known to cause swelling of the vocal cords, which can cause discomfort. A few uncomfortable side effects of Vicodin are double or blurred vision and confusion. Constipation and urine retention are some other side effects. If you abuse Vicodin, you might also experience anxiety, mood changes, vomiting, loss of appetite and headaches. By far, the worst potential side effect of using Vicodin is addiction.
How to Tell if You’re Addicted
A lot of people are addicted to this powerful narcotic, and they don’t even know it. When compared with other drugs, Vicodin has a high emotional and physical dependence. It’s crucial to be aware of the warning signs of Vicodin addiction. If you’re addicted, you might experience insomnia, night sweats, bone pain, muscle pain and fatigue when you run out of the drug. If you’re getting involved in illegal activities to obtain more Vicodin, then it’s likely that you’re addicted. Someone who feels ashamed or guilty about their use of Vicodin probably has an addiction to the drug. Some other warning signs are the need to take more Vicodin for the same effect and taking the drug in quantities that are larger than what a doctor has prescribed. Maybe your family members have expressed concern about your Vicodin usage. These are all some of the warning signs that you might be addicted to the drug.
The Dangers of Long-Term Vicodin Abuse
All prescription medications come with short and long-term risks, and it’s important to be aware of such risks. The prolonged abuse of Vicodin can have especially disastrous effects on your body. For example, one of the most dangerous issues caused by long-term Vicodin abuse is liver disease, which is primarily caused by consuming large amounts of acetaminophen over a long period of time. Another long-term risk is physical tolerance to Vicodin.
Some other long-term risks of Vicodin abuse are respiratory complications and death. You might also suffer from drug interactions between Vicodin and MAO inhibitors. Emotional and physical dependence on the drug can occur after only a few weeks of consistent use. After you’ve used the drug for a long period of time, you can experience agitation, tremors, night sweats and insomnia when you stop taking it.
The primary ingredients in most forms of Vicodin are the same, but there are different names for different forms of the drug. Depending on the formulation, Vicodin might be called Norco, Lorcet, Zydone, Anexsia, Lortab, Vicodin ES and Vicodin HP.
Vicodin Abuse Statistics
Out of all of the different prescription drugs available, Vicodin is the most notorious for ensnaring unsuspecting users. Today, it’s quite easy for anyone to obtain Vicodin because there is such an abundance of it floating around. In terms of insurance coverage, Vicodin is one of the most affordable drugs, which might help to explain its widespread use. According to recent statistics, about two million Americans need professional help for Vicodin addiction. At least one out of every 10 college students will experiment with Vicodin use. In the last decade, Vicodin use in the United States has increased by nearly 400 percent. Every day, thousands of individuals use Vicodin recreationally, and as the drug continues to be prescribed and dispensed in increasing quantities, the problem will only get worse. However, there is hope for those who’re addicted.
Seeking Inpatient Care
In most cases, the best treatment option for Vicodin addiction is inpatient treatment. It’s a type of drug treatment that involves holistic care, and there are many benefits. For those who seek inpatient care, health, nutritious meals, clean living and 24-hour support await. Inpatient care provides the best chance for long-term sobriety. If you or someone you know need help beating an addiction to Vicodin, seek professional help immediately.
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