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Vicodin Addiction Information (Hydrocodone)
Vicodin & Hydrocodone Rehab and Treatment
Vicodin and hydrocodone (the generic form of Vicodin) addiction has increased dramatically over the last decade, and many addiction specialists have become alarmed at the number of people seeking treatment for addiction to these commonly prescribed pain killers.
The most difficult problem is that some people do truly have an issue with pain. Usually there comes a point where the drug starts to create a backlash effect. The pain is not reduced enough to make it worth taking it. The doctor can no longer justify prescribing the amount needed. Tolerance has grown over time. The person has become increasingly addicted. They now have to find illegal ways to obtain the amount of drug they need to get the affect they want.
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Most people do not actively seek an addiction to Vicodin / hydrocodone. In most cases they are prescribed these drugs after an accident or surgery, and over time they become dependent on the drug. Addiction treatment seeks to restore balance by first detoxing the client from the opiate drug, then finding new ways to deal with the chronic pain that allows the client to function physically, mentally, and emotionally.
Often the client will recognize in treatment that they were chasing more than pain relief. They at some point found the drug made them feel differently – and that was a feeling they liked. It is also important to recognize that some people with chronic pain may need to find a level of pain relief that is sufficient to live fully without blunting their ability think clearly. You can’t live with pain at a 7 or 8, but you may be able to function quite well with pain at a 2 or 3. By using non-addictive medications (e.g., SSRIs), acupuncture, meditation, yoga, Pilates, and other alternative treatments, chronic pain can be controlled without powerful opiates controlling you and your life.
The first step of treatment will be a drug detox as hydrocodone has many unpleasant withdrawal symptoms including: depression, muscle and joint pain, heart palpitations, constant sweating, diarrhea, nausea, hypertension, fever and insomnia. Some medications may be used during the detox period, such as suboxone.
Hydrocodone is an opiate typically combined with acetaminophen. It is legally prescribed for pain relief. As an analgesic, it alters the way the human brain reacts to pain without anesthetic effects. Hydrocodone is also a narcotic and thus habit forming. Hydrocodone is ingestible in pill form, snorted in crushed form, or dissolved in water and injected. Hydrocodone can be found in many prescription painkiller medications, including:
- Anolor DH5
- Bancap HC
- Lorcet (Loricet)
- Lorcet HD (Loricet HD)
- Lorcet Plus (Loricet Plus)
- Lortab (Loritab)
- Lortab Elixir (Loritab Elixir)
- Vicodin ES
- Vicodin HP
Effects of Hydrocodone on the Human Body
Hydrocodone is a medicinal opioid and binds to receptors in the central nervous system that typically bind with the body’s own physiological opioids such as endorphins and enkephalins. Hydrocodone (and other opioids) is frequently abused because overuse of medicinal opioids provides effects beyond pain relief and create feelings of euphoria.
Long-Term Effects of Hydrocodone Use
As an individual continues to use hydrocodone, the body develops a tolerance to its effects (including therapeutic benefits) and increasing amounts of hydrocodone must be taken to produce the same effects. Furthermore, the brain slows or even stops endorphin production, resulting in acute pain without hydrocodone use. Because hydrocodone is almost always bound to acetaminophen, long-term hydrocodone use is particularly damaging and may include liver problems, hearing loss, nausea, headaches and chronic constipation.