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Hydrocodone Lortab Vicodin Withdrawal and Detox

Hydrocodone is a commonly prescribed drug, but when abused, can cause a person’s brain to become chemically addicted to the drug. When this takes place, withdrawal and detox occurs if the person discontinues taking the prescription drug containing hydrocodone. Keep reading to find out more about hydrocodone withdrawal and detox symptoms, what to expect if you are beginning a recovery treatment program and more.

What is Hydrocodone?

Hydrocodone is a combination drug that is opioid-based. It belongs to the group of medicine called narcotic analgesics. In other words, these are pain medicines. They work by acting on the body’s central nervous system to relieve pain.

Unfortunately, when hydrocodone is used for an extended period of time it is possible for the drug to become habit-forming, which can cause mental or physical dependence – as is common with opioid drugs. This means the user needs more of the drug in order for it to achieve the same effect on the central nervous system.

However, just because the drug has the potential to become habit-forming that does not mean that it will become habit-forming for those who use the drug properly. Hydrocodone often is mixed with other drugs on the street that are used with the intended purpose of getting high.

Physical dependence can lead to hydrocodone withdrawal side effects if treatment is stopped suddenly or if the abuser quickly stops using the drug. However most severe hydrocodone withdrawal side effects are able to be prevented by tapering off the dose, decreasing the amount of the drug being used over a period of time, before stopping treatment completely.

Brand names of Hydrocodone include:

  • Lortab
  • Lorcet
  • Vicodin
  • Norco
  • Hycet

Overall sales and production of this drug have increased in recent years as well as its illicit street use. More than 435 million people are believed to have used illegal narcotics in 2015 in the United States. Illegal drugs containing hydrocodone are typically used via oral syrup or gel capsules as opposed to intravenously into the bloodstream, which is a common way to abuse the drug for other opioid-based medications and street drugs like heroin.  

Hydrocodone Withdrawal Symptoms:

hydrocodone withdrawal

When the user or abuser of the drug begins to cut off use of the drug or greatly reduce the amount of the drug they are consuming, it can cause hydrocodone withdrawal symptoms.  This happens because the body needs time to recover from the changes the drug has made to its central nervous system.

Symptoms include:

  • Anxiety
  • Agitation
  • Runny nose
  • Sweating
  • Yawning
  • Goose bumps
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal cramping
  • Diarrhea
  • Insomnia

Hydrocodone Detox Process:

Once the user or abuser begins the withdrawal process from hydrocodone, this is called detox. It is a way for the body to expel any toxins the drug has released into the bloodstream during use. The symptoms that go along with the hydrocodone detox are often very uncomfortable, but are not life-threatening. Symptoms can start within the first 12 hours after the last usage of the drug. Depending on the length of the addiction/and or usage of the drug, that can impact the length and severity of the hydrocodone detox process.

Depending on the severity of the addiction, the drug addiction withdrawal process may require medical assistance to overcome. This can happen in the form of an inpatient treatment program or an outpatient treatment program. For some, it may be as simple as undergoing the withdrawal symptoms under the advisory of a healthcare professional, like your physician.  Fortunately, for those who may be dealing with an ongoing addiction problem there are many available options for inpatient and outpatient treatment programs for hydrocodone addiction.

It is believed to be part of a person’s chemical makeup, which impacts how likely a person is going to be to develop chemical addictions. Some brains may be wired to the point of a higher susceptibility rate of addiction. For these people, misuse of prescription drugs like thost mentioned above containing an opioid-based drug like hydrocodone, it can be easy to become addicted. If you or someone you know is struggling with a hydrocodone addiction and is seeking resources for help, be sure to contact a health care professional right away to begin the process of hydrocodone withdrawal and detox.


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