Is Oxycodone An Opioid?

Oxycodone is an opioid that is used in the treatment of moderate to severe pain. This drug has a high potential for abuse and addiction. Seeking treatment for oxycodone addiction can prevent dangerous side effects like an overdose.

With the rising opioid epidemic in the United States, people may wonder whether the medication they are taking is classified as an opiate. Painkillers such as oxycodone are classified as opioids and can be addictive as well as dangerous if misused.

Oxycodone is a controlled substance that is only available through a prescription. It is a potent painkiller that is used to treat moderate to severe pain.

Oxycodone is the generic name for drugs like Oxycontin. Oxycontin is the extended release version of this drug and is used in the treatment of chronic, persistent pain.

What Are Opioids?

Opioids are a class of drugs that are made from poppy plants. In addition to oxycodone, other opiates include heroin, morphine, and codeine. Legal opioids like oxycodone are used in the treatment of pain.

Opioids work by binding to the opioid receptors in the brain. They quickly pass through the blood-brain barrier, making them highly potent. By binding to the opioid receptors in the body, these drugs block feelings of pain.

There are three different types of opioids — natural opioids, semi-synthetic opioids, and synthetic opioids. Oxycodone is a semi-synthetic opioid, meaning that it is partially made from poppy plants and partially made in a lab.

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All forms of opiates have a high potential for abuse, physical dependence, and addiction. People who misuse opioids are also at a higher risk for overdose due to the potency of these drugs.

Many people report feeling euphoric after taking opiates like oxycodone even when they are used as prescribed. Feelings of euphoria can stimulate the brain’s reward system, putting people at an increased risk for abuse and addiction. The more oxycodone a person uses, the more likely he or she is to develop dependence and addiction.

People who misuse oxycodone and other opiates can quickly develop a tolerance to the drug. This means that they need to take more of the substance to get the same effect. Taking more of an opioid only increases the risk for addiction and overdose.

Oxycodone Abuse And Addiction Treatment

Oxycodone is a potent opioid that should only be taken exactly as prescribed. Even when taken as prescribed, this drug can be highly addictive.

Oxycodone floods the brain with dopamine, resulting in feelings of euphoria and pleasure. It also can elicit an emotional response which only adds to this drug’s abuse and addiction potential.

Abusing oxycodone for even a short period of time can lead to dependence and addiction. The more oxycodone a person takes, the higher the risk for negative side effects. These side effects can include vomiting, nausea, breathing problems, and drowsiness.

People who are addicted to opioids like oxycodone will often need to seek professional treatment to overcome addiction. Most individuals will need to begin treatment with a medically monitored detox program due to the physical dependence this drug can cause.

After successfully ridding the body of the drug, a formal treatment program will likely be recommended. Inpatient treatment programs are often the most successful treatment approach for oxycodone addiction.

To learn more about whether oxycodone is an opioid and treatment options available for oxycodone addiction, contact us today.

National Institute on Drug Abuse - Opioids

The Washington Post - See how deadly street opioids like ‘elephant tranquilizer’ have become

ScienceDirect - Oxycodone

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