OxyContin is the extended-release form of the prescription medication oxycodone. It is one of only two opioids, along with fentanyl, that are approved by the FDA for use in children. OxyContin detox is best accomplished in a hospital or hospital-like setting, which could be a rehabilitation center that includes a medical detox unit. Medical detox is defined as the process of removing the substance or substances from a person’s system while under the 24-hour supervision of medical professionals.
It does not necessarily include medications to assist with withdrawal symptoms (but can depending on the protocols of the particular treatment facility) but assists in many ways with preventing relapses. OxyContin detox accomplished at home or in another more casual setting than a medical detox unit is problematic since the proper support by medical professionals is not present. Also, the individual has easy access to the drug or any substance they may turn to as cravings set in during withdrawal. This can also be very dangerous in that a relapse that occurs during detox may result in the person binging and overdosing as the urge to use again can be severe.
OxyContin detox may be necessary for a person who was prescribed the medication for 100% legitimate medical reasons, but built up a tolerance while taking the drug as ordered. This is why it is very important for patients to report any changes in the affect a drug they have been prescribed is having to their treating physician immediately. If pain management medication is still necessary, a person’s doctor can develop a different solution so that a drug dependency does not occur. Patients who are taking OxyContin may also feel like they “know their bodies” and can increase (or decrease) the dose a doctor has prescribed for them as their pain is better or worse during their treatment. Serious pain medications are available only by prescription, and individuals should stick to their prescribed dosage or consult their physician. Increasing your own dose, or “self-medicating”, is a path that can lead to a tolerance and addiction, and eventually the need for OxyContin detox.
Of course, there are people who abuse OxyContin who were never prescribed the drug and they are broken into two groups as well. Individuals who use another person’s prescription drugs, whether it’s a friend or a family member, are abusing the medication and even if they are using it for the symptoms it is typically prescribed for, should avoid this behavior. Medications and doses are prescribed individually by doctors based on a person’s specific needs and any underlying health issues they may have or are currently experiencing. For example, a particular medication may affect people differently and in negative ways that have high blood pressure, and someone taking the drug without a prescription may not be aware of this fact.
The last category of people who may be abusing OxyContin, and could easily become dependent on the drug and may need to go through OxyContin detox, are those who use it for recreational purposes. Individuals who want to “take the edge off” like someone might do by having a drink or who want to take enough OxyContin to experience a euphoric effect and get high acquire the drug either by stealing from those that they know who are prescribed the drug or by buying it on the street. People who addicted to any of the family of painkillers, especially opiates or opioids, may purchase or steal whatever they can find in order to feed their craving for the effects of that group of drugs. Individuals addicted to a prescription medication like OxyContin typically have tried other substances, including other prescription drugs or illicit drugs like heroin.
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