Substance Use

Vicodin Use Disorder Treatment

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The misuse and abuse of prescription opioids, including Vicodin, is a severe problem in the United States. Vicodin, a potent opioid painkiller, has been a staple in medical practice for managing moderate to severe pain. However, its highly addictive nature has led to a concerning rise in opioid use disorder (OUD). 

Hundreds of thousands of people each year struggle with addiction to these powerful drugs. Individuals grappling with Vicodin addiction or OUD face numerous challenges in breaking free from the grips of addiction. The risk of developing an addiction to Vicodin increases if it is used for a long time or in high doses; causing physical dependence. 

Effective treatment approaches are crucial in addressing not only the physical dependence but also the underlying psychological factors driving the addiction.

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What is Vicodin?

Vicodin is a prescription pain medication that contains hydrocodone and acetaminophen. (1

Hydrocodone is a narcotic pain reliever, and acetaminophen is a non-narcotic pain reliever. Vicodin is typically prescribed for moderate to severe pain and can be taken orally or rectally. 

Vicodin is a Schedule II controlled substance. (2) Schedule II drugs, substances, or chemicals are defined as drugs with a high potential for abuse, with use potentially leading to severe psychological or physical dependence. (3)

What Are the Side Effects of Vicodin?

While Vicodin can be effective in relieving pain, it also has a number of potential side effects. The most common side effects of Vicodin include:

  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • Stomach pain
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Constipation (5)

Some less common side effects include:

  • Dry mouth
  • Headache
  • Blurred vision
  • Changes in appetite (5)

In rare cases, people may also experience allergic reactions to Vicodin. You must speak with your doctor if you experience any side effects when taking Vicodin.

Is Vicodin Psychologically Addictive?

The short answer to this question is yes, Vicodin is psychologically addictive. 

Vicodin is typically prescribed for moderate to severe pain and can effectively relieve pain. However, because of the way it works, it can also be addictive. The pain relief of Vicodin & how it releases dopamine additionally triggers users to want to use more of the drug.

Opioids in the central nervous system exert their analgesic effect by increasing dopamine release by disinhibiting GABA’s effect on dopaminergic neurons. The dopaminergic neurons most associated with addiction are those of the “reward center”. (6)

Vicodin addiction occurs when people use it more frequently or in higher doses than prescribed or if they use it for non-medical reasons. When this happens, they can develop a tolerance to the drug, meaning they need to take more of it to get the same pain relief. 

They may also start to feel withdrawal symptoms when they try to stop taking Vicodin. As a result, people with a Vicodin use disorder often find themselves in a complex cycle of taking the drug just to relieve withdrawal symptoms.

Vicodin Withdrawal 

Vicodin withdrawal symptoms can include:

  • Flu-like symptoms
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety
  • Abdominal cramping (7)

 In severe cases, patients may also experience hallucinations and delusions.

The best way to avoid Vicodin withdrawal is to slowly taper off the drug over several weeks or months. However, some patients may still experience mild withdrawal symptoms even with a slow taper.

If you are considering stopping Vicodin, it is important to speak to your doctor first to make a plan that minimizes your withdrawal risk.

Why Would People Take Vicodin?

People might take Vicodin for different reasons. Some might have chronic pain and find Vicodin helps relieve it. (4) Others might have had recent surgery and been prescribed Vicodin for postoperative pain relief. Still, others might take Vicodin recreationally to experience the euphoric effects.

Whatever the reason, it’s important to be aware of the risks associated with taking Vicodin as these may affect your well-being. The drug can be addictive, particularly if people take it when they are not under the supervision of a healthcare professional.

Even people who take it as prescribed can develop a tolerance, requiring ever-increasing doses to achieve the same effects. Additionally, Vicodin can interact dangerously with other substances, including alcohol and additional prescription medications.

What is the Difference Between Hydrocodone and Vicodin?

Vicodin is a popular pain relief medication that contains both hydrocodone and acetaminophen. Hydrocodone is an opiate, which means it’s derived from natural substances found in the opium poppy plant. (8)

Vicodin, on the other hand, is a combination of hydrocodone and acetaminophen, a pain reliever found in drugs like Tylenol.

Hydrocodone is a painkiller in the opioid family (related to morphine). Acetaminophen is an over-the-counter medicine used to treat pain and inflammation. They may be combined into one prescription medicine to treat pain. (9)

Hydrocodone and Vicodin both work by attaching to opioid receptors in the brain, which is necessary to help decrease the feeling of pain.

However, Vicodin is a specific brand name for a medication that contains hydrocodone. So, while hydrocodone is the active ingredient in Vicodin, Vicodin itself is a specific type of medication that includes hydrocodone along with another ingredient to enhance its pain-relieving effects.

Which is More Addictive: Hydrocodone or Vicodin?

While there are many types of opioids, hydrocodone and Vicodin are two of the most commonly abused. So which is more addictive?

The answer is hydrocodone. Hydrocodone is a last-resort option to treat opioid-tolerant patients with severe, chronic pain.

However, it is generally only prescribed for severe pain. Because of the high potential for abuse, hydrocodone should only be used as directed by a physician, and should never be taken without a prescription. If you or someone you know is struggling with an opioid addiction to hydrocodone or Vicodin, seek professional help as soon as possible.

Is Hydrocodone Easy to Get Addicted to?

Yes, hydrocodone is easy to get addicted to. It is a strong painkiller and is often abused by people in pain. Hydrocodone is an opioid painkiller that affects the body similarly to morphine. 

When someone uses this drug, it binds itself with opioid receptors in their brain and blocks out pain signals. People addicted to hydrocodone often use more than what was prescribed because it gives them a euphoric feeling, similar to what happens when you take heroin. (10)

The most common side effects of hydrocodone include constipation, drowsiness, and dizziness. It can also cause more severe side effects, such as shallow breathing, confusion, and seizures.

If you suspect you or someone you know is addicted to hydrocodone, it is crucial to seek professional help immediately. Addiction is a serious condition that can have devastating consequences if left untreated.

Vicodin Abuse 

While Vicodin can provide effective pain relief for some people, it also has a high potential for abuse. This is because Vicodin contains both hydrocodone and acetaminophen, which are both highly addictive substances.

Hydrocodone is one of the most common pain medications prescribed by clinicians and one of the most abused by patients. It is a relatively potent drug for moderate-to-severe pain control in postoperative patients, patients with trauma, and patients with cancer. (11)

Vicodin can cause euphoria and relaxation when taken in large doses, leading to addiction. Vicodin abuse can cause serious health problems, including:

  • Liver damage
  • Kidney failure
  • Respiratory depression

In addition, Vicodin addicts often build up a tolerance to the drug, requiring larger and larger doses to get the same effect.

If you or someone you know is struggling with Vicodin abuse, it is important to get help as soon as possible. Many treatment options can help people overcome substance use disorders and lead healthy, productive lives. 

What Are the Symptoms of Vicodin Addiction?

Vicodin is a powerful painkiller that contains both hydrocodone and acetaminophen.

It is prescribed to treat moderate to severe pain but can also be extremely addictive.

Vicodin addiction and drug abuse can cause many physical and psychological symptoms, including:

  • Drowsiness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Constipation
  • Loss of appetite
  • Mood swings
  • Mental health issues like anxiety and irritability
  • Memory problems and difficulty concentrating
  • Slurred speech
  • Slow reflexes
  • Impaired coordination

If you or someone you know displays these symptoms, it may indicate a Vicodin addiction. If you suspect someone you know is addicted to Vicodin, getting them help as soon as possible is essential. Vicodin addiction and substance abuse are serious problems that can have devastating consequences.

How Long Does It Take to Get Addicted to Vicodin?

Any use of Vicodin can lead to addiction, as it only needs to be taken short-term before you develop a tolerance and need more of the drug to feel the same effects. Once this happens, you are at risk of becoming addicted. The time it takes to become addicted to Vicodin varies, but the addiction often develops in a very short time frame.

Some people may only need to take the drug for a week before they start to feel like they need more of it. Others may take it for a month or two before they begin to feel addiction setting in. 

Once addiction takes hold, it is tough to break free without professional help. Vicodin addiction treatment often requires detoxification and rehabilitation to be successful.

Addiction Treatment 

Vicodin is a prescription painkiller that contains hydrocodone, a synthetic opioid that is a Schedule II controlled substance. Other Schedule II drugs include methadone, oxycodone, and fentanyl.

Vicodin is highly addictive and can lead to serious health problems, including:

  • Liver damage
  • Respiratory depression
  • Death (12)

If you or someone you know is struggling with Vicodin addiction, it’s essential to seek treatment as soon as possible. Various treatment options are available, including detoxification, medication-assisted treatment, and behavioral therapy. Detoxification can help rid the body of the drug and reduce withdrawal symptoms.

Medication-assisted treatment involves the use of FDA-approved medications, such as buprenorphine to reduce cravings and prevent relapse. Behavioral therapy can provide patients with the tools they need to change their thinking and behaviors related to drug use.

How to Get Help for a Vicodin Addiction

If you think you may be addicted to Vicodin, it’s important to seek help as soon as possible. There are many treatment options available, and the sooner you start, the better your chances of success. (13)

One option is to enroll in a rehabilitation program. These programs provide intensive counseling and support to help you overcome your addiction.

There are also many 12-step programs, such as Narcotics Anonymous, which can be helpful for those struggling with Vicodin addiction. If you’re unsure where to turn for help, your doctor or pharmacist can point you in the right direction. Remember, admitting you have a problem is the first step to recovery.

Outpatient Treatment

When it comes to addiction, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. The best course of treatment will vary depending on the individual and the severity of their addiction. For some people, outpatient treatment may be the best option.

Outpatient programs allow people to live at home and continue working while receiving therapy and other forms of treatment. These programs typically meet for a few hours each week and may last for a few months. While outpatient treatment is not suitable for everyone, it can be an effective way to treat Vicodin addiction.

It provides structure and support while allowing people to maintain some independence. If you are considering outpatient treatment for Vicodin addiction, consult with a qualified addiction specialist to discuss your options.

Inpatient Treatment 

An inpatient treatment center for Vicodin addiction is a place where people can go to detox and get help for their addiction. Vicodin is a powerful drug, and it can be very hard to stop using it. There are many types of inpatient treatment centers, but they all have one goal: to help people overcome their addiction.

These treatment centers usually offer counseling, group therapy, and medical detoxification. Treatment centers vary in their approach to treatment, but they all aim to provide a safe and supportive environment for people trying to recover from an addiction.

Get Help With Zinnia Health

Are you or a loved one struggling with an addiction to Vicodin?

You’re not alone. Millions of people are addicted to prescription painkillers every year. But there is hope. Zinnia Health can help you overcome your addiction and get your life back on track.

We understand that opioid use disorder is a disease, and we’re here to provide compassionate care for you during your treatment. Our team of experts will work with you every step of the way to ensure that you have the best chance for success.

Contact Zinnia Health today at (855) 430-9439 to learn more about our Vicodin addiction treatment program and how we can help you get your life back on track.


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Ready to get help?
(855) 430-9439
Why call us? Why call us