There is an opioid crisis in America. Over 2 million Americans each year are affected by prescription opioid misuse, whether through their own addiction or the addiction of a loved one. This opioid epidemic doesn’t just affect those who suffer from addiction; it also severely impacts the families who live with someone who has abused opioids like Percocet, fentanyl, or oxycodone. Whether you suspect someone you love of opioid dependence or you’re trying to help them with oxycodone withdrawal, nearly everyone knows someone struggling with addiction. Here’s how you can be aware of this epidemic and how you can help.
Regonizing the Symptoms of Opioid Abuse
In the last 25 years, changes in government recommendations and aggressive marketing by various pharmaceutical companies have caused a dramatic increase to oxycodone prescriptions for longterm use in patients experiencing chronic pain. These factors have all combined to create an opioid crisis in America that doesn’t look like stopping. If you or someone you know has been prescribed opioids for pain management, here are some signs of opioid addiction to look out for:
- Changes in sleeping habits
- Withdrawal from family and friends
- Sudden, intense mood swings
- An increase in secretive behavior
- Decreased personal hygiene
- Financial difficulties
- Uncontrollable hunger cravings
- Decreased sex drive
Common Oxycodone Withdrawal Symptoms
Maybe someone you love has been struggling with opioid addiction for a while but you’ve only just started to notice a change in their behavior. If someone has been abusing opioids, like Percocet or oxycodone but is trying to stop or has lost access to their supply, they’ll begin to show signs of oxycodone withdrawal.
Withdrawal symptoms can start as soon as 24 hours after an addict has stopped taking oxycodone. They will experience muscle and joint aches, irritability, fatigue, anxiety, and restlessness. Most relapses occur within the first 24-48 hours. Opioid withdrawal symptoms get worse the longer that someone has been taking the drug. Symptoms can continue for over a week after someone has stopped taking the drug, at which time they may express remorse for things that they did and said while they were high.
How to Help A Loved One with Their Addiction
If someone you care about is addicted to opioids, your life can be affected as much as theirs. If you know someone struggling with addiction, it’s important to be honest with them about how it affects your life. You may not want to address your fears out of concern for your relationship but it’s better for all parties if you’re honest with the person you suspect of opioid addiction. Don’t let this epidemic ruin your life and the lives of those you hold dear. Encourage anyone you suspect of opioid dependence to get help today.