The highly addictive narcotic pain killer Vicodin recently became one of the most commonly abused prescription drugs on the market. Individuals that abuse Vicodin include people from every end of the social spectrum. Young and old, poor and rich - those seeking Vicodin drug treatment also come from all walks of life. A brand name for a compound analgesic containing hydrocodone and acetaminophen or ibuprofen, Vicodin is also a highly addictive narcotic. Hospitals and surgeons administer the opiate to control chronic pain or to reduce discomfort after surgery. However, people that habitually take higher dosages of hydrocodone, abusing Vicodin, become addicted, and require drug treatment. To prevent abuse, drug manufacturers compound hydrocodone with non-addictive analgesics, such as ibuprofen and acetaminophen. The additives cause nausea and severe vomiting when taken in large quantities. But individuals have discovered ways to extract non-addictive, over-the-counter components to boost the potency and potential chemical dependency on Vicodin. Vicodin acts on opiate receptors in the central nervous system producing feelings of relaxation, lethargy and euphoria.
Long-term abuse of hydrocodone causes a myriad of physical and psychological problems: chronic fatigue, dizziness and disorientation, abdominal pain and bleeding ulcers, constipation, profuse perspiration, and decreased libido. Prolonged use can also cause liver damage or necessitate a transplant. So why do people abuse Vicodin? As a highly-addictive opioid, hydrocodone not only takes away chronic pain, but it also induces feeling of euphoria. People simply want to escape from personal problems; and Vicodin abuse seems to provide an one-way ticket. Very few people intentionally become addicted to Vicodin; but somewhere along life's highway, they decided to take the wrong turn just to feel good; not knowing that the price of a good feeling can cause one to lose their life. After coming down from a high, an individual may realize that the price for abusing Vicodin is too high, and they begin to think about getting drug treatment, but they need support in many ways from loved ones, to do so. As with other opioids, such as heroin, cocaine, methadone, and morphine, chronic use causes psychological dependence; and Vicodin addiction treatment is required to help put a stop to the cycle of Vicodin abuse which is a form of self-destructive behavior.
Over time, individuals abusing Vicodin, develop serious side effects. A person who discontinues using their regular dosage most likely experiences severe Vicodin withdrawal symptoms, including anxiety, muscle aches, runny nose, chills, abdominal cramping, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting With individuals who abuse the drug, the fear of Vicodin withdrawal can be a strong motivating factor in the continuing use of Vicodin. Over a period of time more and more Vicodin is needed to have the same pain relieving effects and to ward off Vicodin withdrawal symptoms. Many people end up abusing larger doses of Vicodin, and their addiction continues to escalate. Like other opiates, Vicodin withdrawal symptoms take hold of an addict's body and mind sending the person further into the darkness of addiction, if they do not have the support of a drug treatment program. For people that are caught up in this vicious cycle of Vicodin abuse and addiction, a long term residential drug treatment is the best possible way to put an end to this nightmare.
If Vicodin use has reached dangerous levels, the drug can also cause serious side effects to a person's health. Such Vicodin side effects include hepatic diseases, physical tolerance to the drug, and physical dependence on the drug which produces serious withdrawal symptoms. Vicodin abuse is very difficult to treat because the denial around the addiction is so strong. Many individuals rationalize their use saying things like, "I can't be addicted, it's prescribed by a doctor," or "I need it for pain management." Vicodin addiction is often thought of as "less serious" than street drug addiction but its effects can be just as devastating on an individual's life. Vicodin addiction affects every area of an individual's life including mental, emotional, physical and spiritual aspects. It can tear apart families, destroy relationships and leave lives in havoc without proper intervention and treatment.
Vicodin addiction withdrawal may take from five to seven days to wean patients physically from the drug and its side effects. However, weaning individuals psychologically, takes much longer. For this reason, experts in the field of addiction strongly recommend long term residential drug treatment for the best possible outcome in regards to opiate addiction. Because Vicodin overdose is so common, the best possible way to avoid it is to make arrangements for drug treatment as soon as possible. Millions have recovered from Vicodin abuse and addiction and are back with their families, living successful, happy lives, free from addiction.