Percocet, an opiate medication commonly prescribed to those who are in pain or have recently had a surgical operation and it is one of the most abused legal drugs. Within a short period of consistent use or abuse of the small white tablet, a tolerance will develop followed by an addiction. This addiction can cause dangerous effects, some of which are deadly.
How Percocet Affects the Body
This pain medication is a combination of oxycodone, a synthetic opioid, and acetaminophen, the active ingredient in Tylenol; together these compounds create a powerful pain killer. Percocet works within the brain and spinal cord and thus binds to a user’s opiate receptors (chemical messengers for pain and pleasure). Once Percocet takes over these functions, the user will have a sense of euphoria and a decrease in pain. This can be of a great benefit and relief in people who are suffering; however, it can also create a strong desire for the drug even after it is not needed.
During use, the body stops creating the chemicals that cause a person to feel happy (serotonin and dopamine); this is because Percocet has taken over the job. Therefore, when a user discontinues the medication, the chemicals that allow a person to feel good are not immediately there; at this point, a person will experience withdrawal symptoms. It should be noted that withdrawal symptoms occurring in an individual who did not abuse Percocet will be minor and cease within a few days. In those who abuse or are addicted to Percocet, the withdrawal symptoms will vary depending on the time and amount of the medication taken; however, these symptoms can cause a user to continue taking the drug to avoid the unpleasant effects.
The number of emergency room visits due to an overdose from Percocet has increased by 500%
Possible Dangers of Percocet
Overdose: When Percocet is not taken properly, dangerous effects can occur. One of the most obvious effects is that of an overdose. Addicts may take between 20 and 40 tablets a day causing confusion and a risk for overdosing. If the individual does not seek medical attention, the overdose could cause brain damage or death.
Combining Drugs: Some users who desire stronger effects may take other drugs such as alcohol or benzodiazepines with the Percocet. This can cause further risks and complications which may include overdose, unconsciousness, and death.
Accidents: Being under the influence of Percocet can cause the user to have various cognitive impairments, making driving or working difficult. Abusing the medication means that the user may be like this for long period of time; therefore, they are putting themselves and others at risk for accidents and injuries.
Organ Damage: Additional dangerous effects of Percocet abuse and addiction include damage to organs in the body. Percocet abuse can ‘hide’ the symptoms of head injuries as well as cause those who have heart problems to suffer cardiac distress. When Percocet is abused, acetaminophen, one of the active ingredients, can cause serious, even permanent damage to the liver.
Endocrine Damage: A Percocet addiction can lead to problems with the endocrine system. Therefore, men can develop testicular atrophy, while women can develop amenorrhea. This happens because the natural chemicals that help the hypothalamus function have been suppressed during the abuse.
Getting Into Rehab for a Percocet Addiction
In the beginning days of abuse, Percocet will give the user a sense of euphoria and an escape from reality. Unfortunately, this beginning is typically the ‘peak’ of the users enjoyable experiencing with Percocet. This peak will become a tolerance and a chase for more small white tablets. The user’s life is overtaken and they are unable to function properly with the medication.
Treatment for an addiction to Percocet is vital. A residential programme at The Cabin Chiang Mai starts at 28 days and can go for up to 3 months or more depending on the individuals own circumstances. We can help you to take back your life. Contact us today.
Want to Know More on Percocet
Would you be able to recognize a loved one abusing Percocet? Would you understand the symptoms of abuse or recognize signs of an overdose or withdrawal? If not, take a look at our ‘Percocet Use Abuse and Addiction’ article to get all the information you need. (LINK TO ARTICLE)