OxyContin addiction affects millions of people worldwide. Although tobacco, heroin, and hallucinogen use is slowly declining, opiate use is on the rise. OxyContin, commonly known as oxycodone, is defined by the May 2005 issue of Journal of Pain and Symptom Management as “an opioid analgesic medication synthesized from opium-derived thebaine”. It comes in the form of white tablets and is intended for administration by medical professionals only. It has the potential for addiction due to its “feel good” properties. In 2009, the National Institute on Drug Abuse noted that the non-medical use of Vicodin and OxyContin has increased within the last 5 years among 10th-graders, though remained unchanged among 8th- and 12th-graders. NIDA’s research also indicated that “nearly 1 in 10 high school seniors reported non-medical use of Vicodin; 1 in 20 reported abuse of OxyContin. When asked how prescription narcotics were obtained for non-medical use, about 52 percent of 12th-graders said they were given the drugs or bought them from a friend or relative. Additionally, 30 percent reported receiving a prescription for OxyContin pills, and a negligible number of 12th-graders reported purchasing the narcotics over the Internet.” While it’s reassuring that illicit drug use is on the decline, it is still somewhat staggering to witness the rise of narcotic painkiller abuse. Thankfully there are oxycontin rehab options available.

Abuse Patterns

When medically administered and taken as prescribed, OxyContin can have a positive effect in the lives of patients recovering from invasive surgeries and/or injuries. However, OxyContin is often abused. Those with a preexisting disposition for addiction compulsively use the drug despite negative physical, social and emotional consequences. Their addiction is characterized by continued patterns of oxycodone abuse beyond the scope of popping pills for a legitimate prescription. Oxycodone (referred to synonymously with OxyContin) addicts lose control to the narcotic – stealing, manipulating, and lying throughout their quest to fulfill addictive compulsions. OxyContin addiction is very powerful and often requires outside help in order to jumpstart a successful recovery process.