It is easier than you think to fall into a pattern of abusing Vicodin or a medication that is similar to Vicodin. The fact of the matter is that almost everyone, at some point in their lives, will run into a serious bout of pain in some form or another. Whether it is due to illness, injury, a disorder, or a disease, nearly everyone will experience serious pain at some point in their lives. It is simply a matter of when it will happen, not if it will happen. This is just a fact of life and part of the natural order of things….we all have our ups and downs in life and chronic pain conditions or just the random bout of pain is something we will all have to deal with.
Vicodin drug abuse
Now when you run into this pain in your life, going to the doctor has a very good chance that you will be prescribed Vicodin or some variation thereof. There are other opiate based medications that are all pretty much just as addictive as Vicodin, such as Oxycontin, Percocet, Dilaudid, and so on.
Now it almost seems like the way many of these prescriptions read, it can almost set a person up for Vicodin abuse. This is because the instructions are generally written for “as needed” type of pain management, which sort of puts the patient in control of medication distribution, when it would really be safer to leave that up to the doctor. So it might say something like “take one tablet every 4 to 6 hours as needed for pain.” Well someone who is self medicating can easily fall into an abusive pattern by simply doubling up the dose after noticing they have been popping these things all day and can easily get away with taking 2 at a time instead of just one.
Symptoms of Vicodin abuse
Anyone who has fallen into a pattern of abusing Vicodin will tend to display certain symptoms that can indicate either bordering on the brink of addiction or they might in fact just be flat out addicted to the pills and need serious help. Here are some things to watch for:
1) Stashing pills – hiding their supply, putting them in multiple locations, being sneaky about how many pills they have remaining, etc.
2) Getting pills from multiple sources.
3) Getting pills in an illegal way – i.e., buying them off the street or from a friend instead of through their doctor.
4) Running out of their prescription early – especially if this becomes a pattern over time, like several months in a row.
Vicodin abuse treatment
So let’s say you or someone that you love has decided that they have been abusing Vicodin and they are out of control with it and they want to do something about their problem and get some help. What exactly are their options at this point? What steps can they take to confront their problem? How can they best get through opiate withdrawal?
First of all I would recommend that you start by getting on the phone and seeking out some information. The information that you are looking for is to find out if you can get the addict into a local drug rehab, and how they could possibly be funded for this type of treatment. In most cases this is going to be the best possible route you can go and will offer the best chances of success. Unfortunately, treatment and drug detox can be expensive, so you have to get on the phone and call around and do your homework. The people at the treatment center will be able to help you secure funding and possibly apply for a way to get funded through some other means. In some cases, there will be people who are in a situation where they simply cannot go to treatment because they do not have cash, insurance, and do not qualify for any sort of funding through the government. But the thing is, you will not know for sure if this is the case unless you get on the phone and do your homework. So put in the effort to find out for sure and if it is meant to be then you can get the addict in to drug rehab.
Another possible option is to simply talk with your doctor who prescribed the Vicodin or talk with another doctor and ask them if they will help you to get off of all narcotic drugs because you are addicted to them. In some cases this will not be a practical route to go because some doctors are really not informed about addiction. Heck in some cases they will take you off Vicodin and put you on Dilaudid or even worse! Others are, and can and will help you in some way. In some cases they can set up a taper dosage for you to get off the medications or even use alternative medications that might help you out as well. Of course if you end up going this route, you might need to find some form of support later on so that you do not return to your drug of choice in the future.