What Are the Side Effects of Hydrocodone Abuse?

Written by Chloe Nicosia

Opioid Addiction – What Are the Side Effects of Hydrocodone Abuse?

Hydrocodone is another in a long line of opioid pain relievers. It goes under the brand name Vicodin – a widely prescribed opioid. Opioids are the leading cause of overdose death in the United States since the opioid crisis became a national emergency. The CDC reported that 115 overdose deaths occur every day on average from opioids alone. What are the side effects of hydrocodone? Can hydrocodone addiction be treated?

In this article we will discuss the most notable hydrocodone abuse side effects as well as what is offered as far as treatment goes.

What Are the Side Effects of Hydrocodone?

To answer the question “what are the side effects of hydrocodone?” we must first understand how addicting the drug is. There are several opiate abuse side effects, but one of the most dangerous is addiction since it will cause the person to continue their abuse, increasing their risk factors. In some cases, an addiction can form in as little as three days with misuse. Addiction also brings with it a change in behavior as the disease takes hold. The user will begin to neglect many areas of their life and put most of their focus on getting, using and recovering from hydrocodone. Such an addiction an also cause legal problems as theft becomes the way to continue to support their habit once financial troubles begin.

Reaction times are greatly reduced while under the influence of opioids, as well as cognitive function. As a result, one of the hydrocodone abuse side effects is a high risk of negative outcomes when operating heavy machinery such as a car. Someone found to be driving while abusing hydrocodone may also lose their license as it is harshly punished in some states.

When a person initially abuses opioids, they experience the following:

  • Paranoia
  • Fatigue and lethargy
  • Drowsiness
  • Respiratory depression
  • Nausea

Another aspect to consider when asking the question “what are the side effects of hydrocodone?” are the withdrawal symptoms that set in once a person has become reliant on the drug physically. These can be difficult to deal with and are likened to the worst flu-like symptoms a person could experience.

Overdose is one of the most dangerous opiate abuse side effects. Respiratory depression causing a lack of oxygen to reach the brain and other organs can cause a person to enter into a comatose state and die if help is not found quick enough. Overdose usually happens because of tolerance levels. For example, a person may try to stop hydrocodone abuse because of all of the negative effects it has but then they relapse as cravings and withdrawal symptoms become too much to handle. When the person goes back to using, their tolerance is very low and taking too much becomes very likely.

Hydrocodone Addiction Treatment

Treatment for opioid addiction can be effective if a professional rehab is used. Treatment starts with a detox where the addict may be given medication such as methadone to reduce symptoms such as cravings.

Evidence-based therapy is then used and combined with medications to help prevent relapse. The addict learns new ways to respond to trigger situations, utilizing the relapse prevention strategies and the things learned during cognitive-behavioral therapy. Each case as treated individually to ensure that the best approaches to treatment are used for each person.

To get help for the abuse of hydrocodone, contact Better Addiction Care at 1.800.429.7690. They will help you find an experienced rehab near you.