Content medically reviewed by Vicky Magobet, PMHNP-BC, on July 10, 2020.
With major injury comes the need for strong pain relief medications. Some of these medications, however, can pose dangerous side effects. Oxycodone is no exception.
Oxycodone is used for treating severe pain, but it has been proven to be potentially habit-forming, as well as create other side effects. Consider alternatives to oxycodone the next time you require pain relief.
Oxycodone is an opioid that helps to relieve severe pain by acting on the body's central nervous system. This painkiller should not be taken in situations where non-narcotic medications are effective and is not meant to alleviate mild pain. Though this drug is often medically prescribed, it is one of the most commonly abused prescription drugs in the country.
People who usually take oxycodone include those experiencing moderate to severe pain from conditions such as cancer, severe arthritis or other diseases. It may also be prescribed after surgery.
Some of the typical short-term side effects of oxycodone include:
The side effects of oxycodone vary in severity, ranging from mild to more severe and can occur even if users are not abusing the drug. If your symptoms are mild, they may go away in as soon as a few days. If you experience recurring or more severe side effects, contact your doctor to discuss your symptoms.
With long-term oxycodone use comes the risk of experiencing severe side effects and even extreme dependence, which can lead to addiction, drug abuse or overdose. Oxycodone addiction occurs when users experience psychological and physiological dependence — meaning they compulsively crave and use the drug while raising their dosages in an attempt to combat the drug's increasingly reduced effects. This is known as drug tolerance.
The more tolerance an individual builds for a drug, the more likely they are to experience serious withdrawal symptoms such as:
It is crucial to seek help from a professional if you become addicted to oxycodone.
There are other alternatives to oxycodone that are just as successful in relieving pain. These opioid replacement options are safe, effective and pose far less of a danger than oxycodone:
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