Snorting Oxycodone: Dangers and Long-Term Side Effects

Some brief information about snorting oxycodone:

  • Oxycodone is a prescription opioid with a high potential for abuse. One way it’s abused is by snorting it.
  • Snorting drugs like oxycodone can intensify the effectiveness, but it’s also very dangerous in the long and short-term.
  • Oxycodone is in many well-known prescription pain relievers including Percocet and OxyContin.
  • Anytime you take a prescription drug outside of how it’s prescribed, it’s considered abuse, so snorting oxycodone is a sign of drug abuse.
  • Snorting Oxycontin not only has adverse side effects but can also increase your chance of becoming addicted.
Snorting Oxycodone: Dangers and Long-Term Side Effects
Oxycodone is a semi-synthetic opioid that’s derived from opium and is classified by the DEA as a Schedule II substance. Oxycodone is used for the treatment of pain, and it may be an option for acute pain such as following surgery, or for chronic long-term pain. Despite the therapeutic benefits of oxycodone, it also has many risks associated with it.

Oxycodone is a controlled substance because of the abuse potential it carries. As with other prescription opioids, when you take oxycodone you are taking the chance of becoming addicted and dependent.

As a narcotic analgesic, oxycodone impacts the way your body senses and responds to pain and several variations are available. For example, there is an oral solution, as well as capsules and tablets in different strengths. There are also immediate release and extended release oxycodone options.

One of the most common ways of snorting oxycodone is using OxyContin and crushing it up to then snort it. The reasons this is done with OxyContin, which contains oxycodone, is because it’s a control-release version of oxycodone. Control-released medications are manufactured to gradually release into the bloodstream over time, and someone would only need to take OxyContin every 12 hours or so. When it’s snorted however this effect is erased, and the person is getting all of the effects immediately. With OxyContin, this can be very dangerous or deadly.

OxyContin is available in strengths ranging from 10 mg to 160 mg, and that is a lot of oxycodone, so snorting it produces a rapid sense of euphoria.

When someone snorts oxycodone, the rapid effect occurs because the effects go past the blood-brain barrier faster. As you snort the crushed up medicine, your nasal membrane quickly absorbs it, and the pill doesn’t have to go through GI tract. Instead, it goes directly into your bloodstream.

First and foremost, it’s important to realize that there are many risks of oxycodone even when you don’t snort it, particularly when you’re using it recreationally. For example, some of the adverse effects of oxycodone can include:

  • Drowsiness
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Constipation
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Dry mouth
  • Itching

These are just some of the milder side effects of using oxycodone, even when you take it as prescribed.

It can also lead to more severe side effects when taken orally including shallow breathing, confusion, severe constipation, sexual problems, and feeling light headed.

These side effects at a minimum can be amplified when snorting oxycodone, but the risks can be even more severe as well.

When you snort oxycodone side effects can include a sudden, dangerous drop in blood pressure, seizures, slowed breathing, cardiac arrest or death. For people who are snorting oxycodone and then combine it with other depressants of the central nervous system like alcohol, the risk of a fatal overdose is even higher. Other side effects of snorting oxycodone can include:

  • Severe headache
  • Problems breathing through the nostrils
  • Shaking
  • Tremors
  • Slurred speech
  • Irritability and mood problems
  • Tightening of the chest
  • Damage to the septum
  • Nasal infections
  • Erosion of nasal passages

With snorting oxycodone also comes damage to your nasal passages, and you’re raising your tolerance to the drug and building dependence, which will mean when you stop using oxycodone you will go through withdrawal.

When someone is snorting oxycodone, they may also be more likely to move to heroin or to purchase black market pills that can be deadly. First, an increasing number of people are reporting that they started their heroin addiction by abusing prescription painkillers like oxycodone. Also, if you’re abusing a drug like oxycodone and you turn to the black market to purchase it, you may end up with something like fentanyl instead of what you think you’re buying. Fentanyl is highly powerful and deadly, and if you were to snort it thinking it was oxycodone, it could result in your immediate death.

It should also be noted there is no safe way to go about snorting oxycodone. Doses higher than 80 mg in any situation can cause overdose in people who are not opioid tolerant, and it’s become such a danger and a problem that there is currently work being done to manufacture OxyContin in a way that people who crush it wouldn’t able to get full access to the effects of the drug.

Anyone who has a loved one or themselves is snoring oxycodone should seek help. As was touched on above, snorting oxycodone is always considered drug abuse, and it can result in extremely serious consequences and death.

Snorting Oxycodone: Dangers and Long-Term Side Effects
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