How Addictive Is Percocet?
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How Addictive Is Percocet?

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

Medically reviewed by

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

May 16, 2019

Percocet is an opioid medication used to treat moderate to severe pain. As with other opioids, this drug comes with the high risk of abuse and addiction. Formal treatment is often recommended to overcome Percocet addiction.

Percocet is a prescription pain reliever used in the treatment of moderate to severe pain. This drug is most commonly prescribed after surgery or an injury.

Percocet is made up of two active ingredients: oxycodone and acetaminophen. Both of these ingredients work as pain killers. Oxycodone is an opioid, making Percocet part of the opioid family.

Like other opioids, Percocet comes with the risk of abuse and addiction. Even when it is used exactly as prescribed, Percocet can still be highly addictive and lead to physical and mental dependence.

What Makes Percocet Addictive?

Oxycodone, the opioid component in Percocet, is the reason why this drug can be addictive. Opioids work by binding to opioid receptors in the brain. This can reduce feelings of pain and elicit feelings of pleasure and euphoria.

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People who take Percocet on a regular basis can quickly develop a tolerance to the drug. Abusing Percocet increases the tolerance level an individual has to the medication. Tolerance is when a person needs more of the drug to feel the same effect. Someone with a tolerance to Percocet may take higher doses of the drug in an attempt to continue feeling the positive side effects of the medication.

Continuing to abuse Percocet can quickly lead to dependence on and addiction to the drug. The more Percocet a person takes, the more likely he or she will become addicted to this medication. Percocet addiction can be dangerous and have serious consequences.

Treatment For Percocet Abuse And Addiction

People who are addicted to Percocet will often need formal treatment to successfully achieve and maintain sobriety. There are a number of different treatment options for overcoming Percocet addiction.

Inpatient treatment is typically recommended for individuals struggling with opioid addiction. Inpatient programs provide intensive daily treatment that is catered to each person’s needs and conditions.

To learn more about the addictive nature of Percocet, contact a treatment specialist today.

National Institute on Drug Abuse - Monitoring the Future Study: Trends in Prevalence of Various Drugs

Drug Abuse Warning Network - Drug Abuse Warning Network, 2011:National Estimates of Drug-Related Emergency Department Visits

DailyMed - Percocet

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