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Is Percocet An Opioid/Opiate?

Dr. Ted Bender, Ph.D., LCDC

Medically reviewed by

Dr. Ted Bender, Ph.D., LCDC

April 24, 2019

Percocet is a powerful opioid medication used to treat and manage pain. Due to its opioid properties, this drug has a high potential for abuse and addiction.

The rising opioid epidemic has many people questioning their pain medications. Several medications used to treat pain are considered opioids. One of these medications is Percocet.

Percocet is a drug that consists of both acetaminophen and oxycodone. It is used in the treatment of moderate to severe pain and is only available via prescription. Because of the ingredient oxycodone, Percocet is considered an opioid.

What Are Opioids/Opiates?

Opioids are drugs that are derived from opium from the poppy plant. There are three different types of opioids – natural, semi-synthetic, and synthetic. Natural opioids are derived directly from the poppy plant, while semi-synthetic and synthetic opioids are created in a lab.

Opioids work by binding to opioid receptors in the brain. This changes the way the brain perceives pain and results in pain reduction. Opioids also directly affect the reward center in the brain and can create feelings of euphoria and pleasure. For these reasons, opioids are considered highly addictive and come with the potential for abuse and dependence.

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Percocet is considered an opioid due to the oxycodone found in the drug. Oxycodone is a synthetic opioid that works similarly to other opiates. This means that the drug will act on the opioid receptors in the body to relieve pain.

Like other opioids, Percocet comes with a high risk for abuse and addiction. People taking Percocet should only use the drug as instructed by their doctor. Taking more of the drug or using it longer than prescribed only increases the chances of dependence and addiction.

Getting Help For Percocet Abuse And Addiction

Overcoming an addiction to opioids such as Percocet can be difficult, especially when attempted alone. Luckily, there are several treatment options available to give up the drug once and for all.

Many people have found great success with formal treatment programs such as inpatient treatment. Inpatient programs are often long-term (several weeks or months) and provide daily, intensive treatment. Many rehab facilities offer customized plans of recovery for each individual.

To learn more about whether Percocet is an opioid or to explore treatment options for Percocet addiction, contact a treatment specialist today.

WebMD - Percocet

National Institute on Drug Abuse - Opioids

HelpGuide - Drug Abuse and Addiction

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