What Is Vicodin?
It is a medical combination of hydrocodone (opioid pain reliever) and acetaminophen (non-opioid pain reliever). This combination’s narcotic feeling has contributed to the increase in drug abuse in today’s world.
The Immediate and Adverse Effects of Vicodin Use
As earlier mentioned, Vicodin is a combination of two compounds that have different effects on your body. This is how:
Hydrocodone: Trains the brain and central nervous system to change how your body responds to pain and feelings.
Acetaminophen: It reduces pain.
It should be noted that acetaminophen turns into a liver toxin if induced past certain levels. This aspect makes Vicodin dangerous since an overdose could mean the use of a much lower dose compared to other drugs. The overdose itself could be a short-term impact of Vicodin intake. Other side effects associated with this drug include:
- Nausea and vomiting.
- Limited coordination.
- Depression and anxiety.
- Difficulty breathing.
- Irregular heartbeat.
- Impaired decision making.
- Disturbed concentration.
- Pain relief.
- Reduced emotional know-how.
The short-term effects tend to affect anyone using the drug whether for leisure or prescription. These effects often deter one’s judgment, and most patients continue to use the drug even after the prescription period is over eventually making them just as susceptible to abuse and addiction as alternative users.
The Long-Term Effects of Vicodin
After extended periods of Vicodin use, its effects start to have a negative impact on the individual. Besides addictions, other adverse effects of Vicodin use include:
- Central nervous system and mental breakdown that could lead to depression.
- Gastrointestinal changes, such as persistent constipation and bowel obstruction in critical cases.
- Respiratory and cardiovascular health problems such as respiratory depression and blood pressure.
- Mood swings may make it difficult to interact and relate with others.
- Decreased immunity could make one susceptible to illnesses and infections.
- Sleeplessness that comes without Vicodin dosage.
- Decreased self-esteem in absence of Vicodin dosage.
- Notable changes in brain activity, concentration, and intellectual intelligence.
- Crime-related activities to obtain the drug.
- Violence, that endangers other while trying to acquire the drug.
- Pregnancy risks that could put the individual at risk of a miscarriage or stillbirths and in some cases cause congenital disabilities such as pre-eclampsia.
- Skin complications such as rash and pruritis.
No one trips into addiction in a day, and similarly, Vicodin cravings pile over time which at first may seem harmless only to realize otherwise.
The withdrawal process is probably the hardest part during treatment of any addiction case. During the withdrawal period, the patient will experience high-level cravings of the drug that will drive them into a period of inactivity. Some symptoms of withdrawal may show up depending on how long the patient has been indulged into the Vicodin addiction. These symptoms include; nausea, sleep interruptions, vomiting, head pains, and cold sweats.
During the start of a prescription, you will take the drug the same way you would have a special spot for an ice cream date or a short vacation in between busy working weeks, in short, something appealing but isn’t basic.
The more you continue indulging in Vicodin use, the more you get to change its status to a basic need. Eventually, these cravings will program your brain to only think about quenching the thirst which may tempt you into breaking the law, endangering you and your loved ones to get another dose. Some people find themselves going out of the way to seeking street alternatives such as heroin that have similar effects although illegal.
An unfortunate minority of Vicodin users also experience:
- Deranged episodes.
- Hostility which could lead to disastrous consequences.
- The Common effects
- Individuals are likely to face these effects of Vicodin addiction.
- Endangering other people’s lives.
- Declining performance at work or school.
- The eruption of legal and financial mayhem.
- Broken and troubled relationships.
- Loss of memory and concentration especially during a crime while under drug influence.
- Deteriorating health conditions.
Vicodin Addiction and Mental Health
Vicodin has proven to have a negative impact on mental health as it changes the brain chemistry and organization or by creating disturbances from extreme life circumstances if abused.
Mental illnesses, mostly depression have been on the rise over the last few years in which at least more than a quarter of the United States population has been affected. ADHD, PTSD, and obsessive-compulsive disorder have been on the frontline in causing depression and anxiety and continues to affect masses.
For this reason, you are only advised to turn to Vicodin if all other alternative treatments fail or in the case where you opt for self-medication if the bills become unaffordable.
Luckily, both mental illness and Vicodin abuse are treatable. Accepting that you have an addiction is the first process into healing. Treatment works with the additional use of counseling and recovery programs that will even help you avoid relapsing after treatment.