Identifying Signs of a Percocet Addiction

The Opioid Crisis is Upon Us

The opioid crisis in the United States now claims an average of 130 lives a day as a direct result of an overdose. Considering how many people are either using or abusing these prescription drugs, the risk for substance abuse is all too high. Even under the circumstances where these medications are prescribed by a professional to manage pain, at what point are Percocet addiction signs showing and alerting us to a red flag. 

Often when people think about drug overdoses, they think of illicit drugs like heroin. But a large percentage of opioid addicts rely on prescription painkillers to fuel their substance abuse. Percocet addiction signs are not always the easiest to notice compared to other types of substance abuse.

This makes it very important to make yourself aware of how addiction presents itself, and this could save your life or the life of someone you love.

Percocet is Widely Prescribed and Equally Hazardous  

Opioid addictions are incredibly dangerous because, oftentimes, an individual begins with a real prescription for the drug. But then once dependency or acclimation to the medication sets in, many continue using the drug for longer than the doctor has recommended, or worse, at higher doses. 

There are many opiates on the market regularly used by doctors and hospitals. One of those prescription drugs that are particularly dangerous is commonly known as Percocet.

Spotting common Percocet addiction signs as soon as possible can help combat this crisis. If you think that your loved one, or even you, might be addicted to medication and are exhibiting common Percocet addiction signs and symptoms, it is important to get yourself or them the necessary help to ensure good health and safety. 

Noticeable Signs of a Percocet Addiction

Individuals who are addicted to Percocet, or other substance in general, exhibit patterns and systems to feed their addictions. In truth, sometimes individuals aren’t even aware that they have developed substance dependencies. Not only are they unconscious of these repetitive behaviors, but they have managed to integrate substance abuse into their daily routines. Thus, they are now a consistent way to maintain an addiction. 

Whether or not we are aware of our habits or not, the point of the matter is that they are not healthy and can have deadly consequences. Percocet addiction signs often point toward substance abuse becoming worse and more out of control as time goes by. 

The sad truth is that the struggling individual is the only person involved that is being fooled or better, fooling themselves. No matter how much you deny, plan, or try to cover up the abuse of this drug, the people around you are most definitely going to catch on if they have not already.

Shifts in Behavior or Personality 

Percocet addiction signs usually include some sort of change or shift in personality. This can be due to the way the drug is acting on the brain, or because you are going through a vulnerable time where you are craving more and more Percocet. 

Either way, until you accept that these drugs are taking over your valuable life, you will remain enslaved to them. No matter which route you took that led to substance abuse, the help you need in order to take back your life is readily available and could be the only chance you’ve got to move forward.

If you find yourself relating to any of this information, or the details below, Percocet addiction signs are showing through in your day to day lifestyle. It’s time to recognize them for yourself and get a handle on them before it’s too late.

Surpassing the Length of Intended Use of Your Medication

The first and most obvious Percocet addiction sign to take into account is when a person continues using the drug long after the doctor has recommended it. For any reason at all, if you have illegally acquired these medications, this indicates that you are abusing the drug. This is true among all addicts, with any type of substance abuse. 

Doctors and professionals in the medical field do their best to manage chronic or incidental pain in order to provide you with reasonable relief. That said, the body uses pain as a sign that something is wrong or trying to heal, and prolonged usage of these medications may be masking a more serious threat to your health. 

Why Do People Use Percocet?

Percocet is a prescription painkiller that is often prescribed for patients recovering from surgery. It is used to treat moderate to severe pain levels and is often prescribed for use only a few days after medical procedures. Percocet is rarely prescribed as a long term solution for pain. 

Percocet’s Active Ingredient

Because the drug’s active ingredient is oxycodone, it definitely ranks in as a controlled substance. As a powerful opioid, it is highly addictive. Any doctor that has their patients’ best interests in mind, will discontinue administering after the initial pain is lessened. That’s not to say that there won’t be a residual amount of pain from any surgical procedure that may last longer. In fact, there usually is a period of recovery that pain meds, such as Percocet, are not offered. 

By design, these types of medications work against the pain centers in the brain. Their intention is to make you less aware that there is physical trauma. When the pain centers of the brain are being influenced by this medication, it is harder to identify whether or not something else may be going wrong. 

This is important information that must be collected, especially after a serious procedure. Basically, these substances could be beneficial if used as intended under a doctor’s supervision. However, without proper care, they can do more harm than good. 

Known Risk and Lack of Action

A recent study has been done to look at the precautions taken by doctors before writing a prescription for these addictive drugs. It found that less than 87% of patients are screened for indications of potential or previous drug abuse. Within this investigation, only one out of three examiners will reference to whether or not addiction disease runs in the family. Even more discouraging, it is said that only about 5% of doctors have extended the offer to assist in drug rehab therapy

Because of this lack of inquisition and responsibility that is taken to ensure patient safety, less than 40% of addicts are referred to rehabilitation centers post-treatment. While even knowing that addiction help is out there, it is not mandatory to partake. As a direct result, even fewer substance users and addicts get the follow-up rehab that they often desperately need.  

Identifying the Signs of Percocet Dependence

If you are close to the person that is administered medication by a doctor, pay attention to how long they continue taking the drug. If you know that their prescription should have already run out, yet they continue acquiring and taking the drug, that’s a major warning that something isn’t right.

In 2013, just over 50% of patients whose prescription for Percocet had run out, we’re able to get a hold of them. Usually, from other family members or friends that had some just lying around. 

This is a noticeable Percocet addiction sign that should not go ignored, no matter who that person is to you. Whether they claim to have pain or not, these medications are not meant to be taken often or for long periods of time. If someone you know shows Percocet addiction signs, it’s time to talk with your loved one about addiction. Even if it seems like an unapproachable issue. Even when there is a potential for conflict, know that by getting them rehab help, you are saving their life. 

Behavioral Changes

When a person continues taking Percocet long after their prescription runs out, their instinct is often to hide their addiction. The stigma that surrounds substance addiction, besides the fact that they are obtaining their drugs illegally — or at least dishonestly — is likely hidden because of shame. Percocet addiction signs vary from illegal activity to asking multiple doctors for assistance to chemically manage their pain. 

Unfortunately, as it goes, many Percocet abusers will attempt to hide their addiction at any cost. Because Percocet requires a prescription, when the order runs out, a patient may try to see a different doctor, or get a new prescription from their current one.  Even worse, the next step will likely be to take action to obtain the drug illegally. 

For perspective, 35.8% of high school-aged teens reported that it was considered “easy” to obtain painkillers in 2017. This reality is dangerous in more ways than just one. Especially today, when street drugs are being altered and resold to unsuspecting consumers at more reasonable prices.

Financial Methods to Obtain More Drugs 

Getting your hands on Percocet without a prescription is going to end up being expensive. If the person using doesn’t have a solid savings account to fall back on in order to fund their drug addiction, it’s likely their money will run out fast. Addiction is a disease that will stop at nothing, especially money when the supply runs low. 

Percocet effects, like lack of sleep, mood swings, and depression, can cause the addicted person to start skipping work or slacking off. Things that were once a top priority or responsibility will become secondary to their addiction. As one would expect, when this behavior leads to them being fired and losing their sources of income, it only leads to them becoming even more desperate.

After Financial Resources Run Out From Addiction

Often, this can lead to asking or begging friends and family for money. Additional Percocet addiction signs include the desperation to keep their high going for as long as possible. 

If they can’t get it that way, there is a good chance that one will resort to stealing money. If money isn’t physically available for the taking, stealing anything they can get their hands on to sell or trade will certainly do to avoid going without. 

Once an addiction leads to this, especially if they have been successful in the past, there is no going back. While addicted to this harmful substance, the person you love will seem like someone totally different altogether. Addiction can lead to abandoning all known morals to get their hands on more drugs. 

Harsh Mood Swings and Personality Changes

Among the many Percocet addiction signs, altered behavior will likely be an issue. Violent mood swings, whether constant or sporadic, should be looked out for. These changes in mood or temperament may come and go depending on how long it’s been since the addict took their last dose. 

Because of the way that addiction functions in the brain, in most cases immediately after a dose, an addict will appear to be happy and content. Though as the dose begins to wear off, that mood will quickly revert back to a craving, where they once again become irritable and angry. If this person doesn’t have access to more, it is a good indicator when acting uncharacteristically anxious or even violent.

Personality changes can be the result of a variety of other medical conditions and addictions. In fact, dual diagnosis is definitely a possibility. 

If you’ve noticed any of the other mental or physical signs of addiction, in addition to the mood swings, it is often more obvious what you are dealing with at this point.  

Percocet Signs of Addiction Have Physical Indicators 

  • Coordination issues or unusual clumsiness
  • Dilated Pupils
  • Goosebumps along the skin
  • Restlessness in the arms and legs
  • Yawning at inappropriate times of the day, or in excess
  • Excessive sweating
  • Vomiting, nausea or overall looking unwell or unrested
  • Spikes in temperature or fever
  • Shaking, twitching or tense movements
  • Increased or irregular heartbeat
  • Shallow, deep, or rapid breathing
  • Flush skin or high blood pressure
  • Having a seizure
  • Decline or neglecting their personal hygiene

Aside from the numerous effects opioids have on the emotional front by impacting neuron function in the brain, the physical body will start to react differently as well.  

Percocet addiction signs often include appearing uncoordinated and off-balanced. Signs are exhibited when someone is fighting withdrawal, craving a dose, or is currently intoxicated. If you look close enough, it is easy to spot some of these signs of a Percocet addiction. 

If you notice Percocet addiction signs, such as your loved one has trouble going up and downstairs, stumbles on flat surfaces, or other problems with their balance, it’s time to check for any other additional indicators. 

When someone is exhibiting at least two of these irregular behaviors, it signals that there is something wrong. Approaching the subject with compassion could open the door to effective communication about what needs to happen next. However, in many cases, once addicted to Percocet, a more structured method of rehabilitation is necessary.  

Low Blood Pressure 

Low blood pressure can be caused by any number of conditions, but it can also be another dangerous Percocet addiction sign. An individual that is drug-seeking will likely begin to have more and more doctor appointments. As it is a protocol to record vitals during an appointment, they may soon discover that they are experiencing low blood pressure. 

This is one symptom that can be tough to track. If an addict is obtaining their drugs illegally, they may avoid doctors entirely to keep addiction a secret. There is also the risk that they will forgo treatment for other illnesses that require medical care. When these types of behavioral changes start to become more usual, it may be time to speak with your loved one about drug addiction. 

Behavioral Changes

Percocet addiction signs can be right out in the open or hidden behind closed doors. Keeping a close lookout for simple behaviors or compulsive actions. Especially when they are seemingly unsafe, will alert you when someone could become addicted, or is already hooked on habit-forming medications. 

Take notice if a person is: 

  • Revolving their lives around when they will take their medication, to an obsessive degree. 
  • Expressing the dire need to have or carry on them an excessive supply of their meds with them at all times.  
  • Taking more even or higher doses of their medication, claiming the reason to be pain management. 
  • Making irresponsible or dangerous decisions such as operating a vehicle or machinery while under the influence of one or more substances. 
  • Adapting inappropriate habits or behaviors, especially illegal actions, such as pawning items of value, suspiciously acquiring expensive items to sell without the financial means adding up, or downright stealing.
  • Obvious alterations in their physical appearance, lacking reasonable personal hygiene, or appearing malnourished and strung out. 
  • Reaching out to more than one doctor at a time, or bouncing from doctor to doctor for treatment of the same issue. 
  • Being frustrated when discussing medications, doctors, or alternative pain treatments, when there are reasonable alternatives available.
  • Asking for or taking drugs from other family or friends to fill in the gaps between refills, in order to maintain supply. 

Each addict will have a different method of getting their hands on what they need. Unfortunately, once addiction has taken hold, little can be done to get in the way of that aside from professional treatment. 

Percocet addiction signs can develop over time or start as quickly as overnight. They may not always be consistent, especially if their plan A isn’t working out to their advantage. 

Oftentimes, even when you reach out to help, your help will be refused or may be regarded as condescending. Taking offense to this will not help the situation, and rehabilitation resources are made available, to discuss which method or approach to take to get them help with drug abuse. 

The Negative Effects of Percocet Abuse

Everything in moderation is a very common notion. However, cause and effect is the bigger issue when it comes to addictive drugs such as painkillers. Over time, the damaging effects these drugs have on an individual can become permanent, severely life-altering, and even deadly. 

Opioids, even when taken properly under medical supervision, can lead to psychological problems. Anxiety and depression are the most common. In addition, they may experience sleep disturbances and an overall lack of wellbeing. 

Many times while an addict is trying to cope with these additional side effects, they will try to remove or withdraw from those that know them the best. 

Addiction is personal; it leaches on and won’t let go, like a virus. It forces their brain to tell them that they must do what is necessary in order for addiction to survive and thrive. In order to break the pattern of drug abuse, something life-altering or potentially devastating may be the wake-up call that it is necessary to get clean. However, while waiting for this revelation, the greater the risk becomes of it quickly becoming too late.

Getting Help for Substance Dependence

Spotting a Percocet addiction isn’t always easy, and neither is admitting that you have been abusing your medication. Keep in mind that many of the signs of addiction can also be signs of other medical issues, and left untreated can also have devastating effects. Being isolated and withdrawn from your support system because of fear or guilt will get you nowhere in the long run. 

By putting the pieces together and realizing that each symptom might be a Percocet addiction sign or potentially dangerous habit, you can get assistance, or even save your loved one’s life. Coastal Detox knows that addiction does not have to be the end of your story. 

The professionals who are ready to guide you forward know that oftentimes prescription medication addiction started out as doctors’ orders and got out of control soon after. There is no shame in asking for help to get your life back, and the courage it takes to make the first step is remarkable. 

If you or someone you know is showing Percocet addiction signs or is suffering from substance abuse, we can help. Contact us today to learn more about our drug and alcohol detox center. Call and learn more about your options to break free of Percocet addiction. 

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