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Is Oxycodone Addictive?

Isaac Alexis, M.D., AAMA, AMP-BC

Medically reviewed by

Isaac Alexis, M.D., AAMA, AMP-BC

Oxycodone is a highly addictive painkiller that is commonly used to treat moderate to severe pain. People who abuse this drug are at an increased risk for dependence and addiction. There are several treatment options available to help overcome an addiction to oxycodone.

Oxycodone is part of the opioid class of drugs and is a very common painkiller used in medical settings. While certainly helpful to treat pain, oxycodone is highly addictive.

This drug is a semi-synthetic opioid that is similar to other opiates like morphine and heroin. There are several brand names for oxycodone, including the popular Oxycontin and Percocet.

This substance is used to treat a variety of pain ranging from moderate to severe. The slow-release version of oxycodone is reserved for around-the-clock, severe pain.

People who use oxycodone should only take this substance exactly as prescribed. Taking more than prescribed or taking the drug for a longer period of time can put people at an increased risk for dependence and addiction. Abusing this drug can also result in oxycodone addiction.

How Addictive Is Oxycodone?

Oxycodone has been around the medical scene for more than 100 years and is highly effective at relieving pain. As a semi-synthetic opioid, oxycodone is made partially from the poppy plant and partially in a lab.

Like other opioids, oxycodone is highly addictive. This is because of the rush of dopamine it triggers in the brain. This rush of dopamine can elicit intense feelings of euphoria and pleasure.

People who use oxycodone as prescribed are less likely to become addicted to the drug, but it is still possible due to its potency. Abusing oxycodone can quickly lead to physical dependence as well as addiction.

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People who abuse this drug do so for the high that oxycodone can produce. The more oxycodone that’s used, the more likely a person is to become addicted to the drug. This is because oxycodone directly affects the brain’s chemistry and produces euphoria, pleasure, and reward.

When the drug wears off, people are left feeling depressed. Therefore, many people who abuse oxycodone will take another dose to avoid the comedown. This only increases the physical dependence and potential addiction to this drug.

Signs Of Oxycodone Addiction

When someone is addicted to a drug like oxycodone, he or she will likely portray a number of signs that may be noticeable to others. The more severe the addiction, the more likely these 5 Signs Of Oxycodone Abuse will be obvious to loved ones.

Signs of oxycodone addiction include:

  • experiencing withdrawal symptoms when not on the drug
  • lying about using oxycodone
  • experiencing cravings for the drug
  • prioritizing oxycodone use
  • financial hardships due to oxycodone use
  • health problems
  • withdrawal from friends and family

People who are addicted to oxycodone may also do things they wouldn’t normally do. This can include endangering oneself or others and not caring.

If you believe a loved one is struggling with an oxycodone addiction, talking to them about it and supporting them in seeking help is the best thing you can do.

Oxycodone Addiction Treatment

There are several treatment options available to help someone overcome an addiction to oxycodone. The first step for many people will be to attend a medically supervised detox program to safely withdraw from oxycodone.

Once a detox program has been completed, a successful treatment option is inpatient treatment. These treatment programs offer daily and intensive addiction treatment that is often customized to meet a person’s needs and condition.

To learn more about the addictive nature of oxycodone and the treatment options available for oxycodone addiction, contact us today.

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