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Percocet Abuse and Addiction

Percocet Addiction & Treatment

The way Percocet works is that it changes how your brain feels and responds to pain. Typically, Percocet comes in the form of a pill that either looks yellow and oval shaped or blue or white and round shaped. Percocet also comes as a liquid that can be ingested by mouth. Other brand names for Percocet include Oxycodone/paracetamol, Oxycontin, Primlev, Tylox, Roxicet, Endocet, Xolox, Roxilox, and Perloxx. Street names include Blue Dynamite, Percs, Rims, and Buttons.

What Is Percocet?

Percocet is a prescription opioid medication that’s made from a combination of Oxycodone and Acetaminophen that’s meant to help patients who experience moderate to severe levels of pain. A prescription for Percocet may be given to patients recovering from surgery. Taking Percocet should only be taken as prescribed by a doctor or pharmacist because of its highly addictive qualities. 

Signs of Percocet Abuse and Addiction

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, an estimated 10.1 million Americans aged 12 and up struggled with substance abuse in 2019. Because Percocet is part of the opioid epidemic, it can cause substance use disorder and addiction. These are signs you or a loved one may have an opioid addiction: 

  • The drug is still taken when it’s no longer needed for a health problem
  • A tolerance, chemical dependency, or physical dependency has been developed
  • Withdrawal symptoms are experienced when not on the opioid drug
  • Borrow or steal the prescription drug
  • Family history of substance abuse
  • Social isolation or social withdrawal
  • Cooccurring disorder
  • Personality changes, including rapid mood swings and irritability
  • Bloodshot eyes 
  • Frequent bloody nose
  • Shakes, tremors, or slurred speech

A prescription drug addiction to Percocet causes uncontrollable feelings of compulsion and intense cravings to satisfy the physical dependence and chemical dependence on the opioid drug.

Percocet Withdrawal Symptoms

Although Percocet was designed to reduce symptoms of pain, the hard truth is that when one becomes addicted to it, Percocet makes the problem worse. Drug withdrawal and drug detox occur after the user has been without the drug for a period of time. With taking Percocet, withdrawal symptoms set in as early as five to eight hours without use. At first, drug withdrawal from Percocet will feel like the flu with excessive sweating, changes in body temperature, body and joint pain, and more. By day two until eight, symptoms worsen, including an upset stomach, nausea or vomiting, cramping, sensitivity to light, and more. From day eight and beyond, psychological and mental health symptoms worsen and may include delusions, hallucinations seeing, paranoia, depression, anxiety, and more. 

The effects of Percocet addiction and withdrawal symptoms can range from mild to severe, depending on the individual, the length of time on the drug, and the continued dosage of the drug.

Long Term Side Effects of Percocet Abuse

When this prescription medication has been abused, it can lead to serious long-term substance abuse side effects. Addiction to Percocet can lead to negative effects such as:

  • Liver damage
  • Kidney failure
  • Severe constipation
  • Urinary retention
  • Slightly decreased testosterone levels in men
  • Tolerance
  • Physical and psychological dependence
  • Osteoporosis 
  • Immune suppression
  • Suicidal ideation

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), prescription opioids like Percocet are involved in about 32% of the more than 46,800 U.S. opioid deaths. Like other opioid drugs, one of the major long-term side effects of taking Percocet is the risk of withdrawal and overdose. Negative effects of Percocet overdose include: 

  • Respiratory depression
  • Coma
  • Cold and clammy skin
  • Bluish tint to the lips or nails
  • Constriction of the pupils
  • Slowed heart rate
  • Hypotension

Percocet Addiction Treatment

The effects of Percocet addiction can be hard to overcome. Luckily, there are drug addiction treatment programs for substance abuse at rehab treatment centers with inpatient treatment and intensive outpatient programs available to you and your loved ones. 

When it comes to Percocet addiction, treatment is often multifaceted including medically assisted treatment (MAT) or medication-assisted treatment, as well as counseling like individual therapy, family therapy, group therapy, music therapy, behavioral therapy, and more. Studies show the most effective known opioid addiction treatment includes a medical detox, inpatient treatment, and follow-up with long-term support through community resources at a treatment center.