Hydrocodone is the active ingredient in a number of different opiate painkillers, including Vicodin, Lortab, and Lorcet. Hydrocodone is prescribed in different doses to treat moderate to severe pain and combined with other ingredients in more than 200 formulations designed to treat a number of ailments, according to the US National Library of Medicine.
Classified as a Schedule II drug by the US government, hydrocodone has a high potential for abuse and, though the drug is extremely effective in relieving pain, it is also often over-prescribed and many patients ultimately develop a physical and psychological dependence upon the pills. In some cases, this dependence can develop in just a few days or weeks of regular use.
According to the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), hydrocodone is the second most commonly encountered opiate painkiller among evidence submitted in drug-related crimes. The DEA also states that hydrocodone is the most commonly prescribed drug in the United States for pain; more than 139 million prescriptions for some variation of the drug were given to patients in 2010 and about 36 million prescriptions were dispensed in the first quarter of 2011.
It’s a problem that is widespread and touches almost every part of the population:
- According to the 2010 Monitoring the Future Survey7 percent of 8th graders, 7.7 percent of high school sophomores, and eight percent of high school seniors report abusing hydrocodone in one form or another (or using the drug without a medical reason) in the year prior to the survey.
- The American Association of Poison Control Centers (AAPCC) say that there were 27,753 total exposures, 12,559 single exposures and 31 deaths related to hydrocodone in 2009 in the United States.
- The 2009 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) states that more than nine percent or 23.5 million Americans over the age of 12 have abused hydrocodone or used it non-medically at some point in their life.
- The Drug Abuse Warning Network (DAWN ED), an agency that monitors emergency room admissions related to drug abuse and addiction, reported that there were an estimated 86,258 ER visits associated with the nonmedical use of hydrocodone in the 2009.
Once hydrocodone addiction becomes an issue, the most effective and safe way to deal with the disorder is to seek medical and psychotherapeutic treatment at a hydrocodone rehab. Substance abuse treatment specialists will be able to provide the comprehensive care necessary to fight drug dependence as well as the co-occurring disorders that may be the primary issue.
Contact us at The Canyon today to learn more about your options in hydrocodone addiction treatment.
Hydrocodone Rehab Treatment
Hydrocodone is just as effective as codeine as a cough suppressant and as effective as morphine in relieving pain. It’s a highly sought after drug among those dependent upon opiates, but it is not a drug that is usually produced on the black market like crystal meth and other drugs. Rather, it is a pharmaceutically produced pill that is often obtained for the black market through a number of sources, including fraudulent prescriptions, theft, doctor shopping (e.g., procuring multiple prescriptions through multiple doctors), fake call-in prescriptions, and the diversion of pills by some doctors and pharmacists, according to the Drug Enforcement Administration Office of Diversion Control.
Because hydrocodone is dispensed often, large quantities are often available and it is easily accessed by most populations. Teenagers and the elderly, residents of all areas of all ages, races and backgrounds have similar access to these pills. The teen population often take advantage of leftover pills from adult family members’ prescriptions and the elderly can quickly become hooked when their prescriptions are not monitored effectively; however, all ages in-between are just as susceptible to hydrocodone addiction.
Just as hydrocodone addiction discriminates against no one, there are also no bounds to the benefits of addiction treatment. The most effective way to treat the issue is for the patient to enroll in a rehab that provides all the addiction treatment services he or she needs to heal from their experience with the addictive pills.
Hydrocodone Treatment Options
Patients will benefit most from a hydrocodone rehab center that is best suited to their needs and the needs of their immediate family.
Some of the options that are available include care that is:
- Inpatient or outpatient rehab
- Traditional approach to treatment or integrated approaches to treatment
- Short-term or long-term assistance
- Treatment that is close to home or far away
- A detox only, a treatment center only, or a facility that combines both
In general, it is recommended that patients opt for the most comprehensive, intensive program available. In other words, residential care with full access to a wide range of treatments and therapies is the prime choice in effective care. Adjusting the length of stay or choosing the location should accommodate the needs of those at home but still prioritize the health and wellness of the patient. Recovery comes first.
Avoiding Hydrocodone Overdose
Rehab is one of the best ways to avoid one of the most dangerous acute effects of hydrocodone abuse and addiction.
According to PubMed Health, the signs of a hydrocodone overdose include:
- Bluish tint to fingernails, lips and/or skin
- Low blood pressure
- Slowed breathing
- Fatigue and weakness
- Loss of consciousness
- Pinpointed pupils
- Respiratory arrest
An untreated hydrocodone overdose can result in cardiac arrest, coma and death. However, if emergency medical assistance is received in time, many patients can be helped.
If you believe that someone you care about has overdosed on hydrocodone, call 911 immediately. If you find yourself in this situation, it is important that you stay on the line and be prepared to relay relevant information like the drug taken, what dosage, if other drugs have been ingested as well (including alcohol), and the victim’s age, gender and weight. You may not have all of the necessary information, but you will be able to play an important role in saving a life.
Benefits of Addiction Treatment
Individuals find that there are a number of benefits that come with undergoing addiction treatment. The latest in cutting-edge and evidence-based therapies and treatments mean that patients have the best care possible and the optimal chance at success.
Abstinence is the primary goal and benefit of an effective rehab program, but other benefits include:
- HIPAA regulations and standards apply to the conversations and interactions between patients and staff members at drug rehab programs. This means that even the patient’s status as a resident or patient at a facility is confidential and may not be disclosed to anyone. This is a huge benefit to high-profile patients and those who prefer to keep their personal life private who otherwise wouldn’t get the care they need to fight addiction.
- Aid of Substance Abuse Specialists. Highly trained therapists and providers who specialize in the treatment of drug and alcohol addiction help patients to understand the many and varied options available. They can also discuss the personal issues affecting each client and direct and guide them toward the treatment services that will be most beneficial.
- The high-end treatment programs provide patients with more one-on-one time with staff and specialists, an environment that is more amenable to healing and recovery, menus designed to enhance detox and ongoing health, and specialists in a number of different holistic and traditional treatment methods.
- Peer Support. Living and healing with other patients who are struggling with the same or similar issues of addiction means that patients form strong bonds during rehab. They also have the opportunity to learn how to work out differences and create positive friendships under the guidance and assistance of the therapeutic team.
- Aftercare Services. As important as hydrocodone detox is to the stabilization of the patient and as essential that therapy is to the development of the patient’s ability to withstand temptation and learn important coping skills, aftercare services give patients the chance to practice those new skills in real-world situations while backed by the support of therapeutic staff and support groups.
When patients dedicate themselves to treatment, they have the opportunity to stabilize physically and emotionally, learn how to make positive decisions, avoid relapse, and build a new life for themselves that does not include drugs and alcohol.
Preparing for Treatment
Many patients feel fear when they consider going to rehab. As much as they no longer want to be physically and psychologically dependent upon the drug, they are scared of what it will take to effectively break free from the addictive substance and whether or not they will be able to function without it. In order to work through these feelings and stop them from becoming an obstacle to treatment, patients are advised to prepare themselves for the experience of rehab in order to make the process of recovery as simple as possible. Some tips include:
- Choose the Right Rehab: Patients should take their time to explore their options in treatment and make sure that they take advantage of the best addiction treatment program for their needs. For example, patients who are diagnosed with addiction as well as a mental health disorder should sign up for a Dual Diagnosis rehab program.
- Organize Things at Home: Rental situations, work schedules, bill payments, mail deliveries and other services– all of these can be dealt with before the patient goes to treatment in order to avoid more problems when rehab is over.
- Don’t Binge: Many feel the urge to take an abundance of painkillers, drink to excess or use other drugs more often than usual because they know that they will be stopping completely soon. Though it’s a normal urge, it’s better to avoid the impulse, and get as much rest as possible in preparation for the detox phase.
- Talk to Those You Care About: Friends and family members may be concerned about what will happen after the patient leaves for treatment. Discussing important points like family therapy, visiting options, communication limitations and other issues will help everyone to be on the same page and in support of the recovery.
- Pack According to Guidelines: The rehabilitation center will provide patients with a thorough list of recommended items to bring and another list of items to leave at home. Following this list and avoiding trying to sneak in any contraband items will make the first few hours of rehab go more smoothly.
What to Look for in a Rehab Program
There are a number of different options for hydrocodone detox and addiction treatment, and holistic care is one of the most effective styles of rehabilitation available, according to the Journal of Psychoactive Drugs.
Some of the treatment options that may be included in a holistic rehab program include:
- Medication: Medications that may be made available to patients going through hydrocodone detox include naltrexone, methadone and buprenorphine.
- Personal Therapy: One-on-one therapy sessions once or twice weekly provide patients with an opportunity to check in regularly and work toward achieving their treatment goals.
- Group Therapy: Sharing experiences with others and providing support for peers are great ways to learn how to build a support system in the outside world that will sustain a lasting recovery.
- Experiential Counseling:Options include nutritional counseling, yoga, meditation, gentle exercise, equine assisted therapy, acupuncture and more. These all provide patients with the opportunity to get active and access emotional issues through different avenues outside of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.
- Aftercare Services: This can mean continued personal therapy, support group sessions, 12-step meetings like Narcotics Anonymous, a monitored workout or nutritional program, and more _ anything that provides ongoing support for the patient as he or she learns how to live out in the world without prescription drugs.
Hydrocodone Rehab at The Canyon
At The Canyon, we offer a holistic prescription drug rehab tucked away in the Santa Monica Mountains inMalibu, California. Patients stay in private residential homes on our expansive estate as they take part in medical detox and psychotherapeutic treatment.
Contact The Canyon for more information today.