Prescription drug abuse is a major hot topic in the United States, and especially in the state of Utah, where such abuse is much higher per capita than the average. One of the great ironies of the spread of addiction over the past decade, particularly with opioids, is that these rises in addiction are largely to blame on prescription drugs, which are given to us by doctors and pharmacists, rather than by dealers on the street. The number of prescription drug overdoses rose over 400% during the aughts, just as the number of prescription drugs being sold rose 400%, as well.
One particularly dangerous prescription drug that can be highly addictive, and be a gateway to other substances, is hydrocodone. Hydrocodone does have important medical applications as a painkiller, and is very necessary for many people. However, the ease with which people can get hydrocodone has made it a popular gateway drug to harder substances, like heroin, which people turn to when their prescriptions run out.
Popular Hydrocodone Brand Names
Here are just a few of the popular brand names that you can find hydrocodone under…
Short Term Effects
The reason that hydrocodone is so appropriate as a painkiller is due to the similarities in the way it operates like other opioids. Hydrocodone is able to affect the receptors in your brain that tell you to feel pain, and negate those effects. At the same time, it causes the brain to release a burst of dopamine, which calms the body down and covers up the pain. In the midst of this numbness, though, are a host of physical effects. Commonly known physical effects are nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and respiratory problems.
Long Term Effects
If a person continues to use hydrocodone over a period of time, it can stunt the brain’s ability to produce dopamine on its own. This is why it is so addictive. This is essentially what heroin does as well, but to the much higher extreme. Because of this, users will have a hard time feeling pleasure and relaxation without the help of hydrocodone, or something stronger. This is especially problematic because hydrocodone usage, over time, will have devastating effects on a person’s liver, especially when it is used in conjunction with alcohol and other prescriptions (which is far too often).
Get Help Today!
Hydrocodone abuse can be incredibly dangerous. If you or someone you know suffers from addiction to hydrocodone, reach out to get the help you need, today!