A codeine-derived drug, Percocet is a potent painkiller drug often prescribed as the first line of pain relief for moderate or severe pain in patients. As an opiate, Percocet acts to relieve pain by binding to opiate receptors throughout the system, particularly those located in the brain and spinal cord.
Percocet’s opiate properties also engender feelings of relaxation and well-being when the drug activates in the body, due to its ability to elevate the presence of neurochemicals in the brain. As a result, users feel euphoric and calm during Percocet “highs” – only to eventually depend on the drug’s psychological effects over time.
Dangers of Percocet Addiction
In addition to the consequences of addiction associated with most prescription drugs – such as drug-seeking behavior, lapses in responsibility, mood swings and financial or relational difficulties – Percocet addiction can lead to overdose in some cases. When combined with other opiates such as heroin, morphine or other prescription analgesics, the body’s automatic processes – such as respiration – can become dangerously slowed. If combined with alcohol, Percocet ingestion can lead to the onset of coma or even fatalities.
Percocet also can lead to opiate tolerance, as the body stops responding to the analgesic and euphoric effects of the drug over time. This phenomenon leads many users to increase their dosages of Percocet, even against doctors’ orders.
Unfortunately, the side effects – such as constipation, dehydration, mood alterations, insomnia and other symptoms – of Percocet do not subside as opiate tolerance progresses. As such, individuals increasing their Percocet intake often encounter higher risks of physical and psychological damage as use prolongs.
Percocet Withdrawal Symptoms
Whether an individual attempts sobriety through self-driven abstinence efforts, or whether Percocet addicted individuals simply feel the drug subside in between doses, Percocet withdrawal symptoms can cause a host of problems during addiction. As users sleep, these temporary withdrawal symptoms may worsen, due to the length of time Percocet has left the system, causing many individuals to experience more acute withdrawal in the morning hours before dosage occurs.
Percocet withdrawal symptoms can include psychological issues such as the formation of anxiety disorders or panic attacks, sleeplessness, irritability, cognitive lapses, memory difficulties and even hallucinations in severe instances. Physically, Percocet withdrawal can be marked by sweating, involuntary yawning, lacrimation and rhinorrhea, and elevated blood pressure. More severe instances of Percocet withdrawal can also include abdominal issues, such as cramping, vomiting, nausea and severe diarrhea. Opiate withdrawal can also cause a host of mobility issues, such as joint pain, severe aches in the bones and skeleton, and tremors or twitching.