Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Addicted to Painkillers? Effective Treatments are Available

Abuse of opiate-based prescription painkillers (Oxycontin, Vicodin, Percocet, etc.) is on the rise among both adolescents and adults. These medications can easily cause addiction, and the incidence of accidental overdose and death is increasing at an alarming rate. Trying to get off of these drugs can be a difficult journey. When trying to kick the habit, people experience a myriad of severe withdrawal symptoms that can include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, muscle aches, sweating, and chills. My patients often say they “feel like they want to die” when going through withdrawal. While withdrawal symptoms are severe, they usually pose no medical risk to the patient. However, due to the severity of the symptoms, many people cannot make it through withdrawal on their own.