Download our Brochure or Request a Free DVD
Toll Free • 24 Hours 1-877-99-REHAB

Hydrocodone Addiction

Prescription Medications Containing Hydrocodone Medications containing the ingredient hydrocodone can be highly addictive. In the United States over the past decade there has been a spike in cases of dependency to prescription medications, and a spike in overdose deaths. One of the chief concerns is prescription pain medications containing opioids. Addiction in all of its forms is treatable, and there is help and recovery for hydrocodone dependency. This page goes into more detail to help with understanding prescription pain medications, and also the efforts of treating it through a recovery or drug rehab program.

Understanding Hydrocodone Addiction

Hydrocodone is an opioid class of drug. It is an effective cough suppressant and analgesic (pain relief medication). It is made up of classifications of opiate, codeine and thebaine. Current US regulations do not allow for pure concentrates of opioids for basic consumption. Hydrocodone is processed in lesser amounts with other medications to make a lesser pain relief medications and cough meds. There are thousands of brand name prescription medications made up of such compounds. Commonly hydrocodone is processed with acetaminophen. Two common drugs of this makeup are Vicodin and Lortab. It is also processed with aspirin as is commonly found in painkillers and antihistamines.
Brand Names Containing Hydrocodone
  • Lortab®
  • Vicodin®
  • Anexsia®
  • Co-Gesic®

Because of its opioid makeup, hydrocodone can lead to abuse and also addiction. Opiates attach to the opioid receptors in the central nervous system increasing the sensation of euphoria. This is a chief reason for hydrocodone abuse. There is much less of a chance of developing dependence when using according to prescribed methods. Increase of the drug also greatly increases the chance of abuse and the brain developing an addiction to the drug's effects. Oftentimes it can require a professional treatment, counseling and therapy to help someone who is struggling with prescription medications.

Tolerance and Dependence

Like any substance the body can develop a tolerance to prescription medications. In this case an increase of the drug is needed to feel the same desired effects. Some individuals suffering from an addiction can take an abnormally large amount of pills per day. This is a dangerous practice as it can lead to overdose. A common practice with prescription addiction is coupling drugs with the use of alcoholic beverage. Alcohol amplifies the effects of the narcotic. This can become a dangerous practice as it can amplify the chance of overdose.

Individuals can develop dependence to hydrocodone. Dependence is when the body has become accustomed to the drug in the system; it is needed for a sense of normal function. This can lead to an uncontrolled compulsion of constantly needing opiates. This is accompanied with changes to the behavior and seeking out and using opiates. To feel normal (or what an addict perceives as normal), opiates are needed in the system constantly, or the individual will experience episodes of withdrawal. It is also not uncommon for those addicted to opiates to move onto heroin from prescription meds, which creates a new set of dangers.

Long Term Effects from Hydrocodone Addiction

Long-Term Effects of Hydrocodone Abuse
  • Tolerance
  • Headaches
  • Nausea
  • Chronic Constipation
  • Liver Damage (Acetaminophen)
  • Dependence
  • Addiction
The chief effect of long term hydrocodone use of course is prescription drug addiction. Something happens in the central nervous system. An addict is unable to discontinue use without help. The majority of the time it can take an intervention from loved ones to get them the help that they are in need of. Addiction can lead to an increase in the levels of use and an increase in the dependency to prescription meds.

As an opiate, it functions as a depressant in the central nervous system. Depressants slow down the functions and the activities of the body and brain. Long-term effects from addiction include low blood pressure, headaches, nausea, constipation and developing tolerance to the drug. The ingredient acetaminophen found in many pain medications can greatly increase the risk and danger of health problems. An overdose of acetaminophen based drugs can cause severe and threatening liver damage.

Treatment for Addiction

Treatment at Cirque Lodge is based upon a personalized approach to prescription drug abuse. We are dedicated to meeting the needs of our residents. We provide the most effective program for arresting the disease and providing necessary means of support. Addiction treatment is based upon a 12-step modality. We incorporate into this treatment model a number of individual and support based programs to enhance the 12-step program.

We want to help you or your loved one through a caring and effective drug treatment program. Call us anytime for assistance at 1-877-997-3422.