Treating Vicodin Addiction

Vicodin is one of the most frequently abused prescription drugs and is comprised of hydrocodone, a very highly addictive opioid-based pain relieving narcotic, and acetaminophen, a non-narcotic pain reliever that can also reduce fever. Even when used as prescribed people can, and do, end up requiring addiction treatment. Especially if they have begun abusing the drug.

There are also a large number of addicts who abuse the drug without prescription. The Drug Abuse Warning Network estimates that over 80,000 emergency room cases annually are directly related to non-prescription use and abuse of hydrocodone. It is in the same narcotic family as morphine, oxycodone and other opioid based drugs, including heroin, which is what many people turn to once their prescription to hydrocodone medications like Vicodin run out and they can’t get the drug through other illegal sources.

Whether you’ve become addicted through a prescription or abuse, getting proper treatment is paramount, which in many cases means proper detox and residential care.

Vicodin Addiction Treatment

Detoxification from hydrocodone depends on several issues, but mainly how long the addiction has been going on and how much of the drug is being consumed daily. A subacute detox center, a facility that specializes in and only does detox, may be necessary.

There are many withdrawal symptoms associated with hydrocodone, as with all opioids, including fatigue, anxiety, irritability, cold or hot sweats, sleeplessness, muscle aches and pains, abdominal cramping, nausea and vomiting, diarrhea and more. In a detox or residential setting, while you’re under around-the-clock care, a physician can prescribe medications to alleviate or relieve some of these symptoms.

Also during residential treatment for Vicodin addiction you maybe be prescribed a medication to help alleviate cravings, such as buprenorphine, or a medication that blocks the euphoric effects of hydrocodone, such as naltrexone.

The program in most residential settings will focus on both restoring your physical health as well as your mental health. These programs feature one-on-one sessions with a psychologist or other therapist, group sessions, family sessions and more. If you’ve suffered a prior trauma that is contributing to your drug use, such as injury or mental abuse, you may also have sessions in cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) or dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT) as well as somatic experiencing. Some treatment centers also offer equine therapy, or art therapy, yoga, meditation and more. Exercise and proper nutrition are also part of rebuilding and restoring health to your body and brain quickly.

Continued Treatment for Vicodin Addiction

It is important for a recovering addict coming out of residential treatment to continue the work of recovery in an outpatient program. This allows for a smoother transition out of a Vicodin addiction treatment program and back into dealing with life without relapsing.

Outpatient treatment is usually only three or four hours a day, five days a week, while living in a sober living home. Outpatient treatment continues many of the therapies used in residential care but also includes guidance in dealing with typical life situations without the use of drugs. Finding a place to live, or work, for example, or dealing with family. It is imperative for anyone going into treatment to be committed to recovery and rebuilding a positive, meaningful, fulfilling life and to reinvest in their own future.

If you or a loved one is suffering from an addiction to Vicodin, please call Recovery Channel now for advice and to see if your insurance will cover treatment.

About Vicodin

Woman addicted to vicodin
Vicodin is a combination of two drugs – hydrocodone, an opiate based semi-synthetic narcotic, and Acetaminophen, which I also a pain killer, but also increases the effects of hydrocodone.

Vicodin was designed for use on moderate to severe pain. Hydrocodone is the most commonly prescribed drug on the market and is a large part of the epidemic in prescription drug addiction currently plaguing the country and which the Federal Government is keenly aware.

According to Federal data, more than 20,000 Americans, of all walks and socioeconomic status, die annually of prescription drug abuse. As a result, the government has recently tightened the laws around prescribing hydrocodone medications specifically.

The Culture of Vicodin Addiction

Vicodin has been a widely prescribed drug to the point of reaching a cultural status of sorts, particularly in Hollywood where many celebrities and stars have succumbed to Vicodin addiction or had trouble with the law for abuse of the narcotic.

Conservative radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh has been treated three times for addiction to Vicodin. His reported loss of hearing in 2001 also have been a side effect of the prolonged use of the drug. Rapper Eminem was known to have taken ten to twenty Vicodin pills a day and even had a Vicodin tattoo.

Quarterback Bret Favre went to rehab for Vicodin addiction, and Cindy McCain, wife of Senator John McCain, also suffered from addiction to Vicodin and was caught stealing the pills from her own medical charity. Other celebs with known Vicodin addictions are Courtney Love, who was arrested in Beverly Hills in possession of the pills, Michael Jackson, Kelly Osbourne and Matthew Perry.

Recovering from an Addiction to Vicodin

Clearly, if you go to rehab for an addiction to Vicodin, you may end up in very good company. But, as an opiate derivative narcotic, Vicodin, and more specifically hydrocodone, is very addictive and difficult to treat.

Several days of detox will most certainly be in order for any serious addiction, usually with a medication to ease withdrawal such as Suboxone, after which either residential care, or partial residential or an outpatient program may also be desirable. In many instances the Vicodin abuse has been coupled with abuse of other drugs, such as alcohol, marijuana and cocaine.

If the addiction is part of a co-occurring disorder other therapies will be needed to treat those conditions, which can range from a pre-existing trauma or mental health issues. When looking to recover from an addiction to Vicodin it is important to seek advice from someone with an expertise in the field of addiction, such as you will find when you call Recovery Channel.

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